With the ongoing problems at Penn Station, Gov. Andrew Cuomo is involved in a lot of finger-pointing. He’s telling Amtrak: “Fix it. Do your job.” Amtrak says they will make repairs, shutting down two tracks at a time (out of 21 tracks at Penn Station) for most of the summer. That means fewer trains, more crowding, and more delays.
However, the New York Times reports that Cuomo hid alternative plans to redo Penn Station, instead preferring alternative plans that involve mostly cosmetic changes which help only a small portion of commuters.
Keep in mind, however, there are two connected problems: the decaying tunnels under the Hudson (run by Amtrak and also used by New Jersey Transit) and the crowded warrens of Penn Station (also used by LIRR but in a building that Cuomo controls). Improving commutes through Penn Station will require a sustained years-long effort with the Governors of both New York and New Jersey working together as well as federal funding. In other words: don’t hold your breath.