When We Commute Again: A Refreshed Ticketed Waiting Area at New York Penn Station

Some denizens of Baristaville may soon be able to enjoy a refreshed ticketed waiting area at New York Penn Station, opened for Amtrak and NJ Transit customers today at the Amtrak Concourse on the Upper Level and 8th Avenue side of the Station. For many still working at home, it may be a while.

As part of the refresh, customers can expect new furniture and fixtures, including seats with electrical and USB outlets to charge devices, an upgraded ceiling complete with new LED lighting, a new information desk and a second entrance in close proximity to the NJ TRANSIT concourse, offering easy access towards the 7th Avenue side of the Station.

To further simplify and safeguard the travel experience, the new space incorporates Amtrak’s new enhanced cleaning procedures, signage is also displayed to indicate safe distances in high traffic areas, protective plastic barriers have been installed at customer counters, and customers and employees are required to wear face masks or an alternative facial covering while in stations and onboard trains.

“The upgrade of the Ticketed Waiting Area makes the NJ TRANSIT concourse even more convenient for our customers and is a prime example of what our renewed partnership with Amtrak can achieve,” said NJ TRANSIT President & CEO Kevin Corbett. “Whether it’s new customer amenities such as this, or together taking on the mega-projects of national significance like the new Portal Bridge, we are firmly committed to leveraging our partnership to raise the bar on regional rail travel which enhances our customers’ experience and drives the region’s economy.”

NJ TRANSIT has been deploying teams of Customer Service Ambassadors to assist customers returning to the mass transit system at major stations. Ambassadors are assisting customers, reminding them to maintain safe practices such as wearing face coverings, being cognizant of distancing where possible and providing masks to those who need them. The complete list of NJ TRANSIT’s “Ride to Recovery” guidelines can be found at www.njtransit.com/recovery.

NJ TRANSIT also continues its “SAFE NJ” customer awareness campaign which focuses on high visibility signage throughout the NJ TRANSIT system to maintain awareness of recommended best practices that ensure a healthier and safer transit system for all.

The project, which includes a $7.2 million total joint investment between Amtrak and NJ TRANSIT, has already started construction on the second phase and is planned to be completed and opened by early Fall 2020. A temporary space to accommodate passengers during the construction period will be near Tracks 13 and 14.

Amtrak undertook the first steps to refresh the Ticketed Waiting Area in 2019 when it opened a Starbucks coffee bar in the space to provide customers with the opportunity to purchase refreshments and removed the exterior information booth to improve customer flow.

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