Constructing Pennsylvania Station
Clip: Season 26 Episode 5 | 1m 35s
Over 500 buildings were initially cleared for Penn Station’s construction, an area equal to two city blocks, or 28 acres. Crews worked day and night to build the train yard below ground, excavating tons of earth from the construction site. Avenues, buildings, and elevated railroads around the construction had to be propped up while workers excavated around the underground infrastructure.
The full episode is no longer available for online streaming. Why?
Please continue to enjoy extra(s) from this episode. The full episode is still available for purchase through the "Buy Now" links.
Problems Playing Video?
In 1961 the Pennsylvania Railroad announced it had sold the air rights above Penn Station.
Two city blocks, or 28 acres, were initially cleared for Penn Station’s construction.
Excavation workers, called “sandhogs,” faced many dangers working in a confined space.
Compressed air was used to keep the water out of the Pennsylvania RR's Manhattan tunnels.
Map history with us! See how engineering has changed America with our new map!
The monumental building that was supposed to last forever was destroyed after 53 years.
Tunneling under the Hudson river proved easy, but the East River was becoming a nightmare.
The engineering feat and architectural achievement that was torn down after just 53 years.
The masonry work on Pennsylvania Station began in 1908.
Measurements showed that the Pennsylvania RR Hudson River tunnels were shifting.
Corporate sponsorship for American Experience is provided by Liberty Mutual Insurance and Consumer Cellular. Major funding by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.