New York – Grand Central Terminal, NY (NYG)

Opened to the traveling public in 1913, Grand Central Terminal is considered an architectural and engineering masterpiece, vital transportation hub, vibrant commercial center – and a symbol of New York City.

Grand Central Terminal

89 East 42nd Street
between Vanderbilt and Lexington Avs
New York, NY 10017

Station Hours

Annual Station Revenue (2017): N/A
Annual Station Ridership (2017): N/A
  • Facility Ownership: Forthcoming
  • Parking Lot Ownership: N/A
  • Platform Ownership: Forthcoming
  • Track Ownership: Forthcoming

Bill Hollister
Regional Contact
governmentaffairsnyc@amtrak.com
For information about Amtrak fares and schedules, please call 1-800-USA-RAIL (1-800-872-7245).

On May 26, 2018, Amtrak began temporarily serving Grand Central Terminal in Midtown East. The Adirondack, Empire Service, Ethan Allen Express and Maple Leaf will operate to/from Grand Central through Sept. 3, 2018, as part of modified Amtrak service while infrastructure renewal work occurs at New York Penn Station.

Over the summer, Amtrak will perform a series of major track, switch and other renewal projects at Penn Station, on the Empire Connection (a rail line running up Manhattan’s West Side, and the Empire Tunnel that links it to Penn Station) and on the Spuyten Duyvil Bridge over the Harlem River. This renewal work will strengthen railroad infrastructure, operations and preparedness – and ultimately improve reliability at America’s busiest rail hub. The infrastructure renewal work accelerates several years of already planned improvements.

Customers transferring between New York Penn Station and Grand Central Terminal may take advantage of taxi and local transit, or they may choose to walk; they are encouraged to allow extra time if transferring between stations. Amtrak personnel will be available at Grand Central Terminal between 6:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. daily, to answer questions and provide information.

Opened to the traveling public in 1913, Grand Central is considered an architectural and engineering masterpiece, vibrant commercial center, vital transportation hub – and a symbol of New York City. It is served by Metro-North Railroad commuter trains and is readily accessible from the subway and various bus lines.

The first railroad to open on the island of Manhattan was the New York and Harlem, which began service to the east side in 1832 and eventually crossed the Harlem River to reach the Bronx – and thus mainland New York. Decades later, it was absorbed into the powerful New York Central Railroad (NYC) under the control of Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt.

By the dawn of the 20th century, growth in commuter and long-distance rail traffic convinced the NYC to construct a new facility to replace its Grand Central Station, parts of which dated to the early 1870s. Taking advantage of improved electric power systems and the possibility for real estate investment around a new station, the NYC chose to bury the tracks, rail yard and concourses at an average of 30 feet below street level. When completed, travelers only saw the magnificent neoclassical terminal building dominating the vista up Park Avenue.

While NYC Chief Engineer William Wilgus focused on the subterranean challenges, prominent architectural firms Reed and Stem of St. Paul, Minn., and Warren and Wetmore of New York City collaborated on the design of the massive station building. Its construction and embellishment required the skills of master craftsmen with expertise in stone carving, plaster and metal work, and painting. Most visitors remember the Grand Concourse ceiling on which Paul César Helleu’s gold-leafed star charts twinkle against a soothing cerulean blue night sky.

In the late 1960s, Grand Central was threatened with partial demolition and subsequently became the centerpiece of a landmark legal case about historic preservation law that eventually reached the U.S. Supreme Court.

When Amtrak began operations in 1971, it originally served both New York Penn Station and Grand Central, which are about a mile apart. Trains operating over the busy Northeast Corridor and to points as far south as Miami and New Orleans used the former, while trains headed to northern and western destinations such as Buffalo, Montreal and Toronto used the latter.

In the summer of 1988, Amtrak and the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) announced a plan, known as the Empire Connection (also referred to as the West Side Connection), to consolidate all intercity passenger rail services in New York City at Penn Station. The move would improve Amtrak operations and finances: customers from upstate New York and the Hudson River Valley would no longer have to transfer between stations, and Amtrak would only have to maintain and staff one facility.

The Amtrak-NYSDOT plan took advantage of a strategic freight line, shuttered in 1982, that ran approximately 10 miles up the West Side of Manhattan and crossed to the Bronx; from there, the line connected with the existing tracks used for northbound service. The roadbed was rehabilitated to support passenger service, but there were two obstacles to address at either end.

To take the line into Penn Station, a tunnel (known as the Empire Tunnel) had to be constructed close to the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. At the northern tip of Manhattan, the steel turntable Spuyten Duyvil Bridge, built in 1900 across the Harlem River, needed repairs before it could be put back into service.

Work wrapped up by spring 1991, and on April 7, operations began over the Empire Connection. Although the consolidation made travel easier for Amtrak passengers connecting to other parts of the national system, it also meant that Grand Central lacked long-distance trains for the first time in its history.

Metro-North Railroad took over operation of Grand Central in 1983 and began a multi-million dollar series of restorations that culminated in a rededication ceremony in 1998. Today, Grand Central Terminal is not simply a transportation hub, but is also a popular destination for fine dining and shopping, as well as special exhibits and events.

Amtrak does not provide ticketing or baggage services at this station. Empire Service trains, the Adirondack and the Maple Leaf are supported by funds made available by NYSDOT. The Ethan Allen Express is financed primarily through funds made available by the Vermont Agency of Transportation and NYSDOT.

Image courtesy of Emily Moser.

Station Building (with waiting room)

Features

  • ATM available
  • Elevator
  • Payphones
  • Quik-Trak kiosks not available
  • No ticket sales office
  • Accessible Restrooms

Baggage

  • Amtrak Express shipping not available
  • No checked baggage service
  • No checked baggage storage
  • Bike boxes not available
  • No baggage carts
  • Ski bags not available
  • Bag storage not available
  • Shipping boxes not available
  • No baggage assistance

Accessibility

  • Payphones
  • Accessible platform
  • Accessible Restrooms
  • No accessible ticket office
  • Accessible waiting room
  • Accessible water fountain
  • High platform
  • Wheelchair available
  • No wheelchair lift
  • Hours

    Station Hours
    Mon12:00 am - 02:00 am
    05:05 am - 11:59 pm
    Tue12:00 am - 02:00 am
    05:05 am - 11:59 pm
    Wed12:00 am - 02:00 am
    05:05 am - 11:59 pm
    Thu12:00 am - 02:00 am
    05:05 am - 11:59 pm
    Fri12:00 am - 02:00 am
    05:05 am - 11:59 pm
    Sat12:00 am - 02:00 am
    05:05 am - 11:59 pm
    Sun12:00 am - 02:00 am
    05:05 am - 11:59 pm
    Ticket Office Hours
    Passenger Assistance Hours