Philadelphia Chapter, PRRT&HS
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Last Update:  05/29/17

MEMBER FEATURE:

Commemorating the Opening of PENNSYLVANIA STATION
Newark, New Jersey - March 23, 1935

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ADDRESSES BY

MR. MARTIN W. CLEMENT
Vice President, Pennsylvania Railroad

HON. MEYER C. ELLBNSTEIN
Mayor, City of Newark

HON. JEROME T. CONGLETON
Former Mayor, City of Newark

HON. W. WARREN BARBOUR
United States Senator

HON. A. HARRY MOORE
United States Senator

HON. THOMAS N. McCARTER
President, Public Service Corporation

MR. GEORGE LeBOUTILLIER
Vice President, New York Zone
Pennsylvania Railroad

This program will be broadcast through the courtesy of Station W-O-R of the Bamberger Broadcasting Service and Station W-N-E-W of the American Broadcasting Company.

Mr. Clement will formally present the new Pennsylvania Station to Mayor Ellenstein, who will accept it on behalf of the City of Newark.  The Mayor will then introduce the speakers and will subsequently purchase the first railroad ticket sold at the new Station.

Following the exercises in the Main Waiting Room guests are requested to go promptly to Raymond Plaza West, to participate in the ceremony of raising the Stars and Stripes over the West Entrance.


232 Trains Daily - Between Newark and New York City

CIVIC GROWTH goes hand in hand with rail transportation.  Courage can found a city; vision can expand it-but only transportation can populate it, feed it and make it commercially important.  Thus, the Pennsylvania Railroad is a conspicuous factor in the rise and development of Newark.  How great you can estimate from these brief facts...  Between Newark and New York daily the Pennsylvania Railroad operates no fewer than 232 trains!  A train in one direction or the other every few minutes!  Miles of meadow, rivers, and mountainous cliffs spanned in so brief an interval as 16 minutes!  A continuous cycle of swift, smooth service that is twenty-four hours round! No two cities of the size and prestige of Newark and New York are linked by so fast and frequent a rail service.  And the magnificent new Pennsylvania Station, with its modern appointments and facilities, will make this service more desirable, more attractive to citizens of both these great cities.


See the De Luxe Passenger Train Exhibit On South Track, Eastbound Platform

In conjunction with the special opening exercises today, the Pennsylvania Railroad and Pullman Company have placed on exhibition in the new Station, one of the most luxurious passenger trains ever assembled by an American railroad.

This train, which hundreds of guests of the Railroad Company and the Newark City Administration are hereby invited to inspect between 1:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m., is located on the South Track, Eastbound Platform. It represents absolutely the last word in modern railroad passenger equipment.

Eight different types of Pullman cars, combining every known comfort, convenience and luxury for travelers, may be seen, including:

    • Parlor Car.
    • Combination Parlor and Lounge Car.
    • Sleeping Car with Lounge and Eight Sections.
    • Sleeping Car with Six Compartments and Three Drawing Rooms.
    • Sleeping Car with Twelve Sections and One Drawing Room.
    • Sleeping Car with Thirteen Double Bedrooms.
    • Sleeping Car with Sixteen Single Bedrooms.
    • Observation-Compartment Car.

The exhibition train also includes four Pennsylvania Railroad cars, one a Standard Dining Car, a De Lure Coach, a Standard Coach and a Combination Passenger and Baggage Car.  The cars are air-conditioned.  With the cars is shown the Class GG1 locomotive, most powerful electric streamlined engine in the world, of which there are fifty-seven more being built for the Pennsylvania Railroad, to be used in the all electric passenger train service inaugurated between New York, Newark, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington on February 10.

The train is fully manned by employees of the Railroad and the Pullman Company, who will gladly answer questions of visitors regarding train schedules, transportation and Pullman accommodations and rates.


Pennsylvania Station, Newark

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General View of Main Waiting Room

The opening to public service of Pennsylvania Station, Newark, on Sunday, March 24, 1935, marks the consummation of the first of three major steps in the extensive program of improvements which the City of Newark and the Pennsylvania Railroad are jointly engaged in carrying out, at an estimated total cost of approximately $42,000,000.  Of this sum, the railroad's share will be $20,000,000 and that of the City $22,000,000.

The undertaking is one of paramount importance, as it aims to provide the residential and industrial population of New Jersey's largest municipality and its environs with transportation facilities, which in completeness, convenience, utility and beauty will not be surpassed in either America or Europe.

Inauguration of service at the new station at this time is particularly impressive by reason of being linked with the establishment of through passenger train electrification between New York, Newark, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, with

materially faster schedules planned for the near future and dedication materially faster schedules planned for the near future and dedication of the freight service soon to follow. This gives New Jersey's metropolitan city a place of great prominence on the largest railroad electrification project in transportation history.

Work on the Newark improvements was commenced six years ago, and about two more years will be required to carry out the entire plan. The portion now ready for use includes the main station building, two platforms and three tracks and a new lift bridge over the Passaic River.  The next step includes the construction of two more tracks and platforms for rapid transit purposes, which will require approximately another year.  The third and final step, which cannot be finished before 1937, will provide additional tracks and platforms, so that ultimately there will be eight tracks and six platforms.  Two more bridges are also to be built over the Passaic River in Newark, with six tracks on the three new bridges.

Harmonious negotiations between the administrative officers of the City of Newark and the Pennsylvania Railroad management, as well as the prospect for the future development of traffic, especially under high speed electric operation, have resulted in the erection of a more impressive and commodious station building than was originally planned, and in a substantial broadening of the scope of the entire improvement project.

The new station has been designed to serve four distinct transportation systems.  In addition to replacing the old station as Newark's principal rail center for passenger traffic, it will, with the elimination of Manhattan Transfer, become the Newark transfer station of the rapid transit lines to downtown New York, and their connecting point with the through trains of the Pennsylvania Railroad.

A large area, at the street level, will be used for a highly developed bus, taxicab and private automobile terminal, and below grade will be the terminus of the new City railway subway.  In planning the station, the City, the Railroad Company and the architects aimed to provide most efficient means of interchange for passengers of these transportation systems, which will eventually occur at four different levels.

 


Architectural Features

Fronting on Raymond Plaza West, the new Pennsylvania Station in Newark extends from Raymond Boulevard to Edison Place, a distance of about 1200 feet.  The main entrance on the axis of Commerce Street, is through an inspiring granite archway leading to the main waiting room and main concourse, from which direct access is provided to the main line tracks above by stairs and escalators.  A similar archway leads to another concourse, which will eventually serve the rapid transit subway and bus traffic.

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Type of Waiting Room Bench, Numbered to Facilitate Meeting.
Ornamental Drinking Fountain in Rear
.

The baggage handling facilities, now temporarily on the Raymond Boulevard side, will be finally located along Raymond Boulevard East.  Another large area at the Market Street end provides a covered driveway for loading and unloading taxicabs and private automobile and connects directly with the main waiting room and the main concourse.

The main station building, which extends outward from the tracks, is an imposing structure, 302 feet long, 79 feet deep and 51 feet high, built of grey Indiana limestone.  The stone blocks are of unusual size, the lintels being single stones over 17 feet long.  Some blocks in the piers are over eight feet in height and width.  The base and the two great archways are of rubbed pink granite, also in large blocks.

The style of the building is based upon classical tradition.  The front presents a rhythmical procession of square pilasters interrupted by the granite archways already referred to.  The skyline is broken by a decorative motive over each archway, a clock and a sunburst, both illuminated from concealed sources in a novel and interesting manner.  Carved limestone panels symbolize the flight of time, and various products, such as wheat and cattle, carried by the railroad.

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East End of Main Waiting Room, Showing Ticket Windows
and Decorative Plaques Representing Various Forms
of American Transportation

A feature of the exterior is the use of aluminum for the window frames and marquises, embellished with decorative panel with dark backgrounds.  The doors are not of the usual wood or metal, but of a red composition called "formica."

On either side of the main building, 327 feet to the east, and 575 feet to the west, extends the impressive viaduct wall sheltering the main line tracks and platforms, which are about 20 feet above the street level. This wall has been given an architectural treatment with an interesting use of materials, namely, elongated "Roman" brick of a light buff color, relieved with occasional metal-faced brick, grey limestone, green terra cotta, pink granite and silvery aluminum.

The direction of the tracks is accentuated by stressing the horizontal lines by bands of brickwork and the elongated shape of the windows. The top and bottom of the wall are finished off with decorative aluminum effects. Market Street and Raymond Boulevard pass under the viaduct through arched portals, flanked by granite pylons surmounted by carved granite eagles.

The outstanding feature of the station's interior is the main waiting room, which is 175 feet long, 58 feet wide and 46 feet high.  The floor is of red terrazzo, with inlaid patterns in black and yellow, outlined by embedded brass strips.  There is a high wainscot of rose yellow travertine from Montana, here used for the first time in the East.  The upper portions of the walls are of acoustic material, and the ceiling is of the same material in die form, laid in herring-bone pattern.

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West End of Main Waiting Room

On the walls of the main waiting room are decorative plaques, modeled in relief, representing the different forms of American transportation, as follows: The Canoe, Horse, Stage-Coach, Prairie Schooner, Steam Locomotive Electric Locomotive Viking Ship, the Santa Maria of Columbus, the Mayflower, the Clipper Ship, Steamship, Motor Bus, and finally the Aeroplane

The ceiling is blue encircled by decorative lines of gold leaf.  The benches are of gray walnut, inlaid with aluminum.  The room is illuminated by four large hanging globes of white bronze and flashed opal glass encircled with pierced bands displaying the signs of the Zodiac. The fixtures, which weigh in excess of 800 pounds each, can be raised and lowered by means of windlasses

At the westerly end of the main waiting room is a large window filled with sheets of variegated translucent Alabama marble through which the afternoon sun shines with unusual and striking effect.   As has been indicated, a bold color scheme has been used in the main waiting room, producing an impression which is much more cheerful and attractive than is usual.

American materials are used throughout the structure.  The main concourse, 45 feet wide, is lined with Napoleon Grey marble to the ceiling which is insulated from the noise of the trains above by a rock wool blanket.

On the upper level, the platforms, 1200 to 1600 feet long and vast enclosing train shed, present a striking spectacle.  The viaduct wall is lined with buff glazed brick; the curved roofs are fitted with skylights and the platform waiting rooms are of aluminum.

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Island Platform Looking East - Showing Aluminum Enclosed
Waiting Rooms and Station Master's Office.

A new high pressure heating plant with a gracefully tapered chimney 175 feet high, on Edison Place supplies steam for heating the station.  An elaborate ventilating system, with provision for air conditioning, is located in the main building of the station itself.

While additional work remains to he done on the station building, it nevertheless provides full facilities to the traveling public, though some of these notably the baggage room and restaurant are in temporary locations until the existing southerly tracks which served the old station, have been replaced.  At that time, the depth of the station will be increased to 319 feet with a new elevation on Raymond Plaza East.


Electrical Facilities

Electricity plays an increasingly important part in the construction of the new station.  Electric service includes the most modern and efficient design. Ample lighting is provided throughout the building, on stairways and on train platforms,

In the main waiting room, illumination is furnished by four combination glass and metal spheres, suspended high above the floor and of five feet diameter, beautifully ornamented and dependent from chain and steel cables which allow these spheres to be lowered to the floor level for cleaning and lamp renewals.  Each of these contains three groups of lamps allowing three different intensities of illumination to be supplied at will.

Where lower ceiling heights prevail, the lights are recessed into the ceiling with flat diffusing glass covers set flush with the ceiling and enclosed in metallic frames.  The lighting current is supplied by generators operated by current from the train power circuits, stepped down through suitable transformers.

As an added precaution, these motor-generator sets, in case of emergency, may be fed from two other power sources.  Emergency lights are installed throughout the station at strategic points and arranged to furnish illumination at important locations such as stairways etc.  This emergency system is kept burning constantly as part of the general lighting and is fed from a separate current supply line at 9~2/3 cycle, which line is used for signal operation.

The power required for the operation of motors, such as on the ventilating system, pumps, escalators, etc, is secured direct from the railroad current and is passed through step-down transformers placed in a special room enclosed in concrete and located in the basement of the building.  Adjacent to this room is the switchboard room where all of the electric services to the building are controlled.

Provision is made for supplying electric service for special purposes, such as show window lighting in the shops, operation of baggage lifts, the recharging of baggage truck batteries, etc

The time element has been given unusual attention, and includes a system of electric clocks which are controlled by two master clocks, which in turn are synchronized with the clock system in the Pennsylvania Station in New York City.  A large illuminated dial clock is mounted over the main entrance to the station and a number of other clocks are spotted around the interior of the building in useful locations. Telephone booths are located in groups at several points.


Mechanical Equipment

Mechanical features embodied in the new station include the most up-to-date equipment.  There is supply and exhaust ventilation, refrigerated drinking water, fire hose, pneumatic tubes for expediting and transfer of messages and documents, baggage lifts to deliver baggage to and remove baggage from the elevated train platforms, escalators for facilitating passengers' arrival on the train platforms, and concealed radiators with thermostatic temperature control so that the temperature in the building will always be maintained at or about 70 degrees without the need of manual operation of radiator valves,

The air used for ventilating is taken into the building from a point high above the street and is filtered, washed, heated and humidified after which it is delivered by fans to the various rooms and spaces.  Air is removed from the same spaces by exhaust fans which, however, carry off only a portion of the air, the remainder finding its way out of the building through doors, vestibules, etc, thus preventing cold inward draughts when doors are opened.

Even the outside spaces under the railroad structure such as the taxicab drive and bus terminal, are kept clear of smoke and gases by large exhaust fans which draw air from these spaces and guard against accumulation of objectionable odors.

In the battery charging room in the basement where the electric baggage truck batteries are recharged, special lead coated copper pipes connected to a monel metal fan, constantly change the air in the room and maintain its purity.

In the main waiting room, air enters through ornamental slots in the ceiling and is removed through concealed ducts connected to grilles under the bench seats

Steam for the heating is not generated in the station, but is produced in a special boiler house two blocks away and is carried over to the station through three pipe lines, any one of which could be used to supply the station in an emergency should any trouble develop with the other lines Water condensed in the radiators in the station, is pumped back to the boiler house, where it is returned to the boilers

All train platforms are supplied with hose boxes every hundred feet, to facilitate washing down the platforms. Rest room accommodations are provided of the latest design.


World’s Greatest Railroad Lift Bridge

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Together with one of the countries finest railroad passenger stations, the City of Newark now also has in its midst what is perhaps the most outstanding railroad lift bridge in the entire world.

Although there are several two-track lift bridge of greater length, the one just completed by the Pennsylvania Railroad in Newark is the longest three-track railway lift span to be built up to the present time while the moving weight of 2,100 tons for the span and 2,100 tons for the two counterweights is exceeded only by three highway (not railway) bridges one located in Albany, N. Y, another in Troy, N, Y, and the third in Newport, England.  The lift span, 230 feet between end bearings, the towers on each end 67 feet long, together with an approach span on the east end, 68 feet long, and a similar span on the west end, 96 feet long, make a total of 528 feet for the river bridge. There are approximately 5000 tons of steel in the superstructure Tracks are 17 feet center to center.

New Lift Bridge With Lift Span in Place For Passing of Trains

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The mammoth new bridge in Newark is of the vertical lift type which raises and lowers like an elevator.  The dead weight of the movable span is supported by a total of 64 wire ropes, each 2-3/8 inches in diameter, which pass over eight large sheave wheels 15 feet in diameter, at the top of the steel towers at each end of the span, and thence down to a steel enclosed concrete counterweight in each tower.  These together equal the weight of the span.

The tops of the towers at the center of the large sheave wheels are 210 feet above mean high water level.  The tracks of the lift span are supported by an unprecedented method of hanging the continuous floor-beams from overhead cross trusses, 54 feet long, at each panel point. The transverse cross trusses which carry the weight of trains and steel into the main trusses, are 21 feet above the rail and the catenary wire is 18 feet above the rail,

When the span is seated, it will clear tops of tugboats 24 feet above mean high water and can be raised 111 feet in 85 seconds to give 135 feet vertical navigation clearance.

New Three-Track Lift Bridge Over Passaic River
Largest of its Type in the World.  Lift Span Raised to Full Height.
Existing Bridge in Background to be Replaced by New Bridge

After being accelerated to full speed the bridge has a rate of travel of two feet per second.

Officials of the City of Newark and the Pennsylvania Railroad Management join in expressing their hearty congratulations to the people of Newark upon the acquisition of this great transportation facility.