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George Washington Bridge Bus Station Renovation

 
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N4 Jamaica




Joined: 16 Apr 2007
Posts: 517
Location: Long Island

PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2014 3:14 pm    Post subject: George Washington Bridge Bus Station Renovation Reply with quote

This appears in several newpaper stories today:
http://www.panynj.gov/bus-terminals/george-washington-bridge-bus-station-restoration.html
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Whether it's a renovation or a restoration, I don't know. However, I am suspicious when the article states that all bus facilities will be on the rooftop level, including the "pavilion" with ticketing (probably only machines), information (probably unstaffed posters), and restrooms (hopefully open, cleaned, and maintained well). No mention of seats in the waiting room. Maybe the elevators will have only three stops: Independent subway, street sidewalk, and "rooftop" bus area.
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In my opinion, passenger usage at GWB has dropped for two main reasons: the improvement in services from Bergen County to PABT; and the crawl of the A train with only 44 seats per car. And they are hard plastic seats, opposed to the upholstered seats on the bus service.
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Hart Bus



Age: 67
Joined: 24 Apr 2007
Posts: 1088

PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2014 4:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Obviously any building even a house needs a freshening up after 51 years

I haven't been in that building since the late 1960's when I go up there from Queens to take a bus (don't remember the operator or route #) to go to Palisades Amusement Park.

Don't recall it being anything special. Certainly not a shopping destination.
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N4 Jamaica




Joined: 16 Apr 2007
Posts: 517
Location: Long Island

PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2014 8:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On January 17, 1964, the New York Times ran a story, "Bridge Bus Depot Marks First Year; Port Authority pleased, but it wants more traffic." The Port Authority had already worked on a major design problem that Pier Luigi Nervi had not considered. Winds howling off the Hudson chilled the passengers waiting to board buses on the platforms under the soaring roof panels he designed. The PA added louvres and plate glass between the panels, and was building heated enclosures for the patrons.
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I have not been inside the terminal in ten years or so, but I recall that outgoing passengers could wait in the large second-floor concourse watching television monitors that showed the activity on each platform upstairs. When their bus arrived, they could scramble for the escalator, one to each platform.
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On April 9, 1967, the Times reported that the last open-lot terminal would close and the buses moved to the GWB terminal. That was the lot at 167th Street for Inter-City buses, I believe the Rte 4 service to Paramus and Paterson. The open-lots near Broadway and 168th Street were more convenient for subway patrons. They could leave the bus, go downstairs, and catch the A, AA, BB, or 1 trains. Only the A train serves the GWB terminal.
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Three years ago, the thread linked below provided more information about the GWB Terminals and the routes serving it.
http://bustalk.info/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3152&highlight=facelift

Joe
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traildriver




Joined: 26 Mar 2011
Posts: 818
Location: Queens, NY

PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I suppose that the street level bus platforms have long been out of use.
No wonder, when you consider the heavy traffic in that area...as I mentioned in the older linked thread, Trailways of New England stopped almost all of its PABT to or from New England schedules there for many years.
If I am not mistaken, BZ runs via the Lincoln Tunnel then up the Turnpike, then back over the GWB on its route to New England...it could make sense for them to stop there, if they could get a slot on the upper level platforms....

Apparently, the former street level platforms are the area being converted to additional retail space....
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N4 Jamaica




Joined: 16 Apr 2007
Posts: 517
Location: Long Island

PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 6:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

traildriver wrote:
Apparently, the former street level platforms are the area being converted to additional retail space....

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The upward slope westwards from Wadsworth Avenue to Fort Washington Avenue is part of the problem in trying to describe the floors of this terminal. If the Port Authority extends the Broadway "retail space" to include the street-level platforms, that space will have a lowering ceiling as it extends west.
The large unprofitable area that the PA apparently wants to convert to profitable use is the extensive concourse, reached from Broadway by escalators, but on the west end at the level of Fort Washington Avenue. I believe that has now been padlocked for renovation.
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Google Street View shows vans or jitneys serving the street-level platforms long-distance coaches once used. Maybe those vans or jitneys will be sent to the only bus level that will remain, third level at Broadway, second level at Fort Washington Avenue due to the slope.
Whenever I get there, I will count the steps up to the temporary boarding platform. For all the complaints, it does not appear to be more than one story. Unfortunately, there might be a security guard at the top checking tickets. The PA is unfriendly to bus fans or photographers who just want to look around. In Jersey City, railfans taking photos of HBLR were stopped by PA police officers because a Port Authority structure was in the background!
I understand that the ticket office will be a trailer resting on the sidewalk on or near Fort Washington Avenue.
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Over on Bus Chat, someone helped the discussion greatly with an aerial view showing how buses on Manhattan streets can enter and leave the upper level bus terminal. I think this option will remain open during the renovation. A bridge connecting outbound and inbound bus traffic allows bus route flexibility.

Please see this link
http://www.subchat.com/buschat/read.asp?Id=297219

Joe
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traildriver




Joined: 26 Mar 2011
Posts: 818
Location: Queens, NY

PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 8:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for that explanation...I haven't been there in about 40 plus years, and even then, never really explored that terminal, other than the section used by the TNE buses stopping there....

Wait a sec......I did pass thru that terminal more recently...I was stranded across the Hudson in Hoboken during the 9-11 tragedy....after about 6 hours, I made my way up to Fort Lee, and after being searched, was permitted to ride from the Bridge Plaza on a special MTA bus across to the Bridge Terminal upper level, at which we all exited and descended several stairways to reach the street below, and eventually into the A line subway station to go home.....
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N4 Jamaica




Joined: 16 Apr 2007
Posts: 517
Location: Long Island

PostPosted: Tue Oct 07, 2014 10:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote



Yesterday I bought an 80-cent senior NJT ticket from here to Fort Lee, walked south on LeMoyne Avenue to a Dunkin Donuts, then found the southside pedestrian walkway back to Manhattan. The above view of the bus terminal looks east. At the left, a van or jitney is on the handy connector that allows buses and vans to loop between the streets and the rooftop station. The upwards arrow on the green W 178 St sign deceives. The ramp to the right of that sign slopes down to W. 178 St.
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In Fort Lee, stairways lead down from LeMoyne Avenue to bus stations for bridge-only passengers and frequent bus or van service.


Last edited by N4 Jamaica on Tue Oct 07, 2014 8:25 pm; edited 1 time in total
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N4 Jamaica




Joined: 16 Apr 2007
Posts: 517
Location: Long Island

PostPosted: Tue Oct 07, 2014 8:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



A neat waiting room has been positioned on the sidewalk of Fort Washington Avenue. The few seats face monitors displaying the platform upstairs and also the street-level stop for ADA travelers. Considering the wintry blasts off the Hudson River and the long waits for buses to arrive through highway traffic, these monitors certainly help passengers. There is a NJT ticket window and two NJT ticket vending machines. A stairway of some forty steps leads to the boarding area along the north edge. Vans load west of the top of the stairway, NJT buses east of the stairway. According to announced plans, the new waiting pavilion will be in the center, with large windows facing west towards the bridge. From the publicity, I'm guessing that the loading bays will be on the east side of the pavilion, with the pavilion itself blocking much of the wind that Nervi did not consider in the original design.
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Go to the streets of New Jersey if you wish to take photos of NJ Transit buses. There are no good views of NJT buses in Washington Heights. Vans and other buses, not NJT, are seen in great numbers along Broadway, Fort Washington Avenue, and the cross streets.
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N4 Jamaica




Joined: 16 Apr 2007
Posts: 517
Location: Long Island

PostPosted: Tue May 16, 2017 8:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The new station has opened today, May 16, 2017.

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2017/05/16/gwb-bus-station-reopens/
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