New intermodal transportation hub for in downtown Buffalo completed

Nov. 10, 2020
The new Exchange Street Station is twice the size of the previous rail station and provides an interconnected gateway to downtown Buffalo, NY.

Major construction has been completed on the new transportation hub in downtown Buffalo, announced New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.

The Exchange Street Station, which was constructed on time and on budget, is twice the size of the city's previous rail station and provides travelers with a convenient and intermodal gateway to Buffalo's downtown with easy connections to local bus and light-rail service. The new station will promote economic activity and tourism for the entire Western New York region and further Buffalo's continued resurgence by making it easier to visit the area's many attractions.

"Access to multiple forms of transportation is essential to growing any local economy. For far too long, the Queen City has been without a welcoming rail station that's commensurate with the growth Western New York has experienced in recent years," Gov. Cuomo said. "Thanks to the hard work of so many people, Buffalo now has the modern transportation hub it deserves - and with the completion of this project we are sending a message that we can still build and get things done even during COVID."

“As a native Western New Yorker, I saw firsthand the renaissance of the region with transformative community and waterfront developments," said Lieutenant Gov. Kathy Hochul. "This new station is a shining beacon of hope for the future as we continue to battle the COVID-19 pandemic. It's a symbol of Buffalo's strength and resiliency, enhancing transportation and connectivity in the area. Downtown Buffalo has become a destination, and this station extends a vital corridor to the waterfront and continues our efforts to build back better our economy, increase tourism and enhance quality of life."

Located near popular destinations, the new station was constructed on the same grounds as the previous, 66-year-old Amtrak Station, but was elevated and moved closer to the street to improve access and visibility. The structure was also designed to accommodate the future expansion of intercity bus service and additional train routes, creating a truly intermodal transit center for downtown Buffalo.

The new station was woven into Buffalo's urban fabric, with improved connectivity to the city's light-rail system - via a new covered pedestrian plaza - and increased accommodation for vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists. With its larger size and modern design, it offers additional seating, more parking, a designated drop off and pickup area and a redesigned platform to make it easier and safer for passengers to board and depart trains.

The new station has a capacity of more than 40 seats and the image of a Buffalo is featured at the center of its Terrazzo floor. The previous station's low-level platform was replaced by a new, longer, train-level platform for easier boarding. It also features new lighting and a canopy. A Taste NY kiosk will serve local food and beverages, encouraging visitors and New Yorkers alike to experience New York-made products while supporting local agricultural and food businesses.

Energy efficient and environmentally friendly materials were used in the new station's construction and the facility is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The New York State Department of Transportation assumed control of the project to replace the train station after the city of Buffalo conducted a location study that resulted in the decision to use the existing station's footprint for the new and improved facility. The state awarded a $27.7 million design-build contract for the construction of the new station in December of 2018 and work began shortly thereafter. The old station was demolished and a temporary station was erected to service passengers during the construction process.

The design-build project delivery method - where both the engineering design and the construction of a project are contracted by a single entity known as the design-builder - was employed to save time and reduce costs.