NEW YORK – The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is set to purchase Grand Central Terminal, and the Metro-North Railroad’s Hudson and Harlem Lines for $35 million.
Midtown Trackage Ventures, LLC, had acquired the assets that once belonged to Penn Central Transportation, the railroad whose 1970s bankruptcy liquidation led to MTA’s assumption of management of the regional rail operations.
The full MTA board is expected to approve the transaction; it was, approved by the MTA Board’s Finance Committee on last Tuesday.
The purchase would put an end to a 280-year lease that gives the MTA a one-time window of opportunity to buy the assets, which closes in 11 months.
MTA ownership of the two rail lines means the public can capture the full value of improvements made through transit-oriented development projects and other public-private partnerships along the rail lines as communities advocate for those projects in the future.
“This marks a new chapter in the railroad’s history and eliminates a quirk that had lingered quietly in the background as Metro-North has established itself,” said Catherine Rinaldi, Metro-North president. “By becoming the true owners of the infrastructure that we have long maintained on behalf of the people of New York, we are asserting Metro-North’s permanence as an institution dedicated to public service.”