Bring Back the New Yorker-Penn Station Tunnel!


amNewYork’s Urbanite unearths some wonderful signage, collateral, and cocktail napkins from the predecessors to the Tick Tock Diner at the New Yorker Hotel, “courtesy of hotel archivist Joe Kinney,” who has a fun job.

Here are some of Kinney’s other finds, patiently retrieved from such detritus outlets as eBay. We knew the hotel was owned by the Unification Church, but we didn’t know there is a tunnel that connects the hotel to Penn Station — though a 2006 Morning News article tells us that the tunnel is now “filled with box springs and dry wall,” and Urbanite tells us it “poses too many security risks to reopen.”


There’s another midtown tunnel that used to connect “to the Hotel Pennsylvania, Gimbels Department Store, the Farley Post Office, and other nearby buildings and subway stations,” says the Municipal Art Society’s Campaign for a Grand Moynihan Station. It was closed in the 1970s — to discourage vagrancy and crime, we’re guessing — and the Campaign thinks reopening the tunnel is a major selling point for the Penn Station renovation: “The Moynihan Station project is an opportunity to create a lively underground network in the Penn Station/Hudson Yards area similar to Rockefeller Center.”

Come to think of it, nobody’s talking about shutting down the Rock Center tunnels for security reasons. And the Campaign mentions another plan by Scott Stringer that would run a pedestrian tunnel under West 33rd Street. So clearly underground passageways don’t pose that much of a threat.

We hate to be pushy, but couldn’t someone talk to the Unification Church about doing the City a favor and opening up their tunnel? After all, we’ve let them use our facilities when they needed them.