As Penn Station gets ready to undergo a much-needed face-lift, one development company is pitching the idea to top it with an almost 1,200-foot tall tower ride — expected to be the biggest and fastest in the world.
The tower, called “The Halo,” was proposed by Brooklyn Capital Partners to be part of the redevelopment of Penn Station, according to the New York Daily News. It would sit on top of Madison Square Garden or the back of Farley Post Office.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced earlier this year that as part of statewide infrastructure improvements, proposals would be accepted for a public-private partnership to transform the transit hub.
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Some proposals the state was looking for include closing 33rd Street and using skylights and a new entrance to bring natural light to the concourse below; removing the MSG theatre to create an 8th Avenue "grand entrance" with commerce, retail and commercial space; and making no large exterior renovations, but focusing on the interior of the station.
The Halo, designed by AE Superlab, would be made of about 17,000 tons of steel and will feature 11 parallel tower rides, which would each be tuned to a different degree of intensity — depending on what the rider wants.
The rides could possibly reach speeds of 100 miles per hour and get to the base of the station in just six seconds, the Daily News reported.
According to AE Superlab, if constructed, the tower ride would be the biggest and fastest in the world offering riders views that are close to three times the height of The London Eye Ferris wheel.
The structure is also expected to serve as an interactive info display showcasing an array of city-relevant information including environmental data and sports results from games inside Madison Square Garden.
“The Halo is a project that is uniquely suited to and tailored for its location in Midtown Manhattan,” AE Superlab said in a statement. “The importance of it's role as the revenue engine for the renovation and upkeep of the beleaguered Penn Station is matched by the impact it will have on the city's skyline as a smart and optimistic 21st century beacon of aspirational architecture. An entirely thrilling way to experience and interact with New York City.”
The transparent structure would cost an estimated $637 million to build and, according to a plan submitted to state officials, could attract close to 7.8 million “thrill seekers,” reported the Daily News.
Other proposals are expected to be submitted by Vornado Realty Trust and Relate Companies.
According to AE Superlab, developers are currently waiting for a response from the state and its partners, Amtrak and the MTA, along with Madison Square Garden.