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A Rosy Development at Penn Station


MSG pulling out, the economic downturn, the transportation crisis, the possibility of the Port Authority taking over, ARC – those of us following Moynihan Station have been battered with some heavy and complicated news recently.

So while the complexities of the project are getting worked out, it’s nice to see some progress in at least one important area: toilets. Specifically, we are referring to this week’s announcement that a $5 million renovation of LIRR’s Penn Station bathroom facilities is, according to Newsday, “in the can.” Steve Ritea reported that “LIRR officials were flush with excitement about the project”:

In recent years, concern about a lack of stalls in the ladies' room, as well as complaints of odor, sent the bathrooms' image down the drain.

The renovation will expand the number of toilets in the ladies' room from 17 to 25 and increase the number of sinks from eight to 19. The number of toilets in the men's room will drop from seven to six, but men will gain two sinks, bringing the total to 10. That restroom will retain 10 urinals.

Our customers deserve state-of-the-art accommodations at Penn Station and our restroom facilities are clearly in need of updating," LIRR President Helena Williams said. "If the riding public can bear with us during construction, we promise major improvements and a maintenance program that ensures their comfort."

After the renovation, the restrooms will ventilate to the street for the first time. They have ventilated onto the LIRR's underground tracks since being built in that location in 1994.

The renovated restrooms will feature mosaic glass tile walls, epoxy terrazzo floors and metal panel ceilings, as well as automated toilets, faucets and soap dispensers, the LIRR said.

In all seriousness, it sounds like a much needed and long overdue improvement for LIRR riders – and let’s hope that it’s not the only one!

Read “LIRR Flush with Excitement Over Restroom Expansion,” by Steve Ritea for Newsday