The NY Times is reporting that the Empire State Development Corporation has selected the developers for the long-gestating Moynihan Station (aka the new Penn Station). Now the question is when will construction actually begin? The new plan, which will put NJ Transit and LIRR trains into the Farley Post Office across the street from the existing Penn Station, also includes possibilities for retail, commercial and residential development for Vornado and Related, the two newly named developers. An interesting point in the article regards the structure of the deal:

The two companies will pay about $300 million for the development rights and an annual payment in lieu of property taxes, which has not been disclosed. The size of the payment was a point of contention between state and city officials. City officials had wanted the amount to be higher than real estate taxes downtown so the development would not compete with the rebuilding effort in Lower Manhattan.

If development on Moynihan Station does inspire West Side development the way pundits think it will, then the 7 train expansion will have to happen - whether Albany wants to believe it or not (the State has been stingy with funds for the MTA). Or some other mass transit solution will have to be offered, because, otherwise, it seems unlikely the far West Side will take off. What do you think?

Here are the latest buzzings about the station on Wired New York's forums and see the earlier plans for the new Penn Station (which have been modified, though it's unclear to what degree) at Skimore Owings & Merrill. Gothamist on the Moynihan Station.