WTC PATH Hub closer to completion

Terrence T. McDonald  The Jersey Journal

A minor but important change is coming this week for PATH riders headed to the World Trade Center transportation hub.

Using roller brushes, workers paint the 'wings' of the World Trade Center Transportation Hub in New York City which is still under construction, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2015. Photo Reena Rose Sibayan The Jersey Journal

Using roller brushes, workers paint the ‘wings’ of the World Trade Center Transportation Hub in New York City which is still under construction, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2015. Photo Reena Rose Sibayan The Jersey Journal

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey plans to open an additional entrance from the station’s PATH platforms to its underground west concourse, which gives riders easy access to the west side of the WTC site without forcing them onto Vesey Street.

Port Authority officials say it should ease congestion around the $3.9 billion station under construction.

“It’s an incremental change,” said Steve Plate, who heads construction of the site.

The marble-paved west concourse leads PATH riders to the underground entrance to One World Trade Center. It also crosses beneath West Street, ending at the Brookfield Place shopping mall, formerly the World Financial Center. The concourse opened two years ago.

The bigger change — opening the station’s exit to Wall Street — is on its way, officials said during a tour of the new station on Wednesday. As many as 50 percent of PATH riders on the WTC line use it to get to Wall Street.

That southern exit is nearly finished. Plate declined to say exactly when it will be open to PATH riders.

Plate led The Jersey Journal on Wednesday through the station, including the distinctive centerpiece, called the Oculus.

“This is the most magnificent view in the city,” he said as he stood on the eastern mezzanine overlooking the Oculus’ interior, under the white steel “ribs” that reach 160 feet into the air. “It truly is a grand space.”

The complex was designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava.

The entire station, which will include 400,000 square feet of retail space, should be open to the public later this year, he said.

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story had the wrong time element. The additional west concourse entrance opening is scheduled for this week.

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