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Located on Market Street in downtown Newark, New Jersey, Pennsylvania Station is one of Newark’s main transportation hubs. Several different train lines converge here, including various Amtrak lines, Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH) trains running between New Jersey and Manhattan, and local New Jersey Transit and Newark Light Rail trains. It is also served by several bus lines, both public and private.
Newark’s original Market Street station had been built in the 1830s. After the Pennsylvania Railroad built two rail tunnels beneath the Hudson River in 1910 and electrified their main line between New York and Washington, DC, the old station was no longer capable of handling the volume of riders it received. The railroad commissioned the famous architectural firm of McKim, Mead, and White to build a new station. Their design is an example of Art Deco architecture, and its main waiting room is decorated with medallions demonstrating the history of transportation, from wagons to airplanes.
Construction on the station began in 1929. The station was dedicated in 1935 and the job was completed in 1937 with the demolition of the old station, the closing of the nearby Manhattan Transfer station, and the realignment of tracks. The station was extensively renovated in 2007, which included restoring and repairing the facade and interior, removing asbestos insulation, and installing new escalators, fire and HVAC systems, new wiring, and other modern improvements. Most of the original design was retained.
Extensive parking is available at the station, and bike racks are also available. The station is handicapped accessible. No free wifi or lockers are currently available.
Many of the passengers who travel through Penn Station each day are commuters — over 70,000 of them — taking New Jersey Transit or PATH trains for the 20-minute ride to Manhattan. However, Penn Station also has extensive links throughout the country through Amtrak, including the Boston-Washington Northeast Corridor line and the Acela Express high-speed rail line.
Penn Station has eight tracks, numbered 1-5 plus tracks A, M, and H, which are used for special trains and the PATH shuttles to Manhattan. The station has an adjoining Hilton Hotel for travelers and is convenient to many of Newark’s attractions. Newark Liberty International Airport is only a few miles away. It is also a short distance from the Prudential Center, home of the New Jersey Devils hockey team.
Penn Station is an important landmark in Newark, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.