The website Untapped Cities has apparently been sending people out (or at least receiving reports from disparate individuals and then signing them up) to find parts of the old and beloved Penn Station in the bowels of the new and reviled Penn Station. The latest find is a staircase from the old McKim Mead & White station, whose lower levels – train platforms and staircases down to them – were kept largely intact when the beautiful structure was removed and replaced what people scurry into and out of today. “New Remnant of Old Penn Station Discovered by Untapped Cities Team” is a pleasant romp, especially if you drill down into the previous reports of Untapped Cities’ urban archaeologists.
Except for Governor Cuomo’s ridiculous non-proposal last month, I don’t think there has been any big news regarding the prospect of rebuilding the station as proposed by architect Richard Cameron. Untapped Cities should keep its teams going farther and farther into the station to find more and more parts of the original that can be applied to rebuilding it. After all, much of what exists under the rabbit warren is original and can be applied to keeping the cost of the project down – compared, no doubt, to the modernist proposals, which can be expected to bring renewal (that is the usual combo of ugliness and stupidity) to every aspect of what exists today – with the exception of bringing back what we once loved so much. The horror!
I recently discussed the latest developments, if you can call them that, in “Hint, hint: Rebuild Penn Sta.,” which links to an in-depth description of Cameron’s plan in Traditional Building magazine.