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Hoboken Terminal

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Hoboken Terminal
Erie-Lackawanna Railroad Terminal.jpg
Hoboken Terminal in 2012
Location1 Hudson Place
Hoboken, NJ
Owned byStreet level: NJ Transit
Underground: PANYNJ
Line(s)Hoboken Division (NJ Transit)
Uptown and Downtown Hudson Tubes (PATH)
Platforms9 island platforms and 1 side platform
BSicon BOOT.svg
NY Waterway to Battery Park City Ferry Terminal
NJT Bus NJT Bus: 22, 23, 63, 64, 68, 85, 87, 89, and 126
Platform levels2
Parkingavailable within area
Bicycle facilities88 spaces
Disabled accessYes
Other information
Station codeHOB
Fare zone1
OpenedFebruary 25, 1907
Electrified1930: 25 kV 60 Hz (NJT)
600 V (DC) third rail (PATH)
750 V DC Overhead lines (Light rail)
Passengers (2017)15,628 (average weekday)[1] (NJT)


Passengers (2018)8,267,843[3]Decrease 6.1% (PATH)
Preceding station NJT logo.svg NJ Transit Following station
Newark Penn Station
toward Bay Head
North Jersey Coast Line
limited service
Newark Penn Station Raritan Valley Line
limited service
Newark Broad Street Montclair-Boonton Line
Morristown Line
Newark Broad Street
toward Gladstone
Gladstone Branch
Secaucus Junction Pascack Valley Line
Secaucus Junction
toward Suffern
Main Line
Bergen County Line
Secaucus Junction Meadowlands Rail Line
Terminus Hoboken–Tonnelle 2nd Street
Newport 8th Street–Hoboken Terminus
Bayonne Flyer
Preceding station MTA NYC logo.svg Metro-North Railroad Following station
Secaucus Junction Port Jervis Line Terminus
Preceding station PATH logo.svg PATH Following station
Terminus HOB–WTC
Christopher Street
Newport JSQ–33 (via HOB)
Weeknights Weekends Holidays
Former services
Preceding station NJT logo.svg NJ Transit Following station
Arlington Boonton Line
until 2002
Newark Broad Street Montclair Branch
until 2002
Harrison Montclair Branch
until 1984
Preceding station Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad Following station
toward Buffalo
Main Line Terminus
toward Montclair
Montclair Branch
toward Gladstone
Gladstone Branch
toward Dover
Boonton Line
Erie-Lackawanna Railroad Terminal at Hoboken
LocationOn the Hudson River at the foot of Hudson Place, Hoboken, New Jersey
Coordinates40°44′6″N 74°1′39″W / 40.73500°N 74.02750°W / 40.73500; -74.02750
Area4 acres (2 ha)
ArchitectKenneth MacKenzie Murchison
Architectural styleAmerican Industrial
NRHP reference #73001102[4]
Added to NRHPJuly 24, 1973

Hoboken Terminal is a commuter-oriented intermodal passenger station in Hoboken, Hudson County, New Jersey, United States. One of the New York metropolitan area's major transportation hubs, it is served by nine NJ Transit (NJT) commuter rail lines, one Metro-North Railroad line, various NJT buses and private bus lines, the Hudson–Bergen Light Rail, the Port Authority Trans Hudson (PATH) rapid transit system, and NY Waterway-operated ferries. More than 50,000 people use the terminal daily, making it the ninth-busiest railroad station in North America and the sixth-busiest in the New York area. It is also the second-busiest railroad station in New Jersey, behind only Newark Penn Station, and its third-busiest transportation facility, after Newark Liberty International Airport and Newark Penn.[5] Hoboken Terminal is wheelchair accessible, with high-level platforms for light rail and PATH services and portable lifts for commuter rail services.


The site of the terminal has been used since colonial times to link Manhattan Island and points west. It was long a ferry landing accessible via turnpike roads, and later plank roads (namely the Hackensack, the Paterson and a spur of the Newark Plank Road). In 1811, the first steam-powered ferries began service under John Stevens, an inventor who founded Hoboken.

Hoboken Terminal under construction, 1907
Hoboken Terminal under construction, 1907
Hoboken Terminal shortly after its construction
Hoboken Terminal shortly after its construction
An Erie Lackawanna commuter train arriving at Hoboken in November 1978
An Erie Lackawanna commuter train arriving at Hoboken in November 1978

The coming of the railroads brought more and more travelers to the west bank of the Hudson River. Passengers traveling to Manhattan from most of the continental USA had to transfer to a ferry at the riverbank. Cuts and tunnels were constructed through Bergen Hill to rail–ferry terminals on the west bank of the river and the Upper New York Bay. The first of the Bergen Hill Tunnels under Jersey City Heights was opened in 1876 by the Morris and Essex Railroad, which was leased by the Delaware, Lackawanna, and Western Railroad (DL&W). The DL&W built the modern terminal in 1907, and opened the second parallel tunnel in 1908. Both tunnels are still used by NJ Transit.[6] The tubes of the Hudson and Manhattan Railroad, forerunner of PATH, were extended to Hoboken Terminal upon its opening. The first revenue train on the new line ran from the terminal on February 26, 1908.

At the peak of intercity rail service, five passenger terminals were operated by competing railroad companies along the Hudson Waterfront. Of these, Hoboken Terminal is the only one still in active use. Those at Weehawken (New York Central), Pavonia (Erie Railroad), and Exchange Place (Pennsylvania Railroad) were demolished in the 1960s, while the Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal was restored and is now part of Liberty State Park.

In October 1956, four years before its merger with the DL&W to form the Erie Lackawanna Railway, the Erie Railroad began shifting its trains from Pavonia Terminal to Hoboken. The Erie moved its Northern Branch trains to Hoboken in 1959. In October 1965, on former Erie routes, there were five weekday trains run to Midvale, three to Nyack on the Northern Branch, three to Waldwick via the Newark Branch, two to Essex Fells on its Caldwell Branch, two to Carlton Hill, and one to Newton.[7][8] All those trains were dropped in 1966. The last intercity trains that called at the station, with service to Chicago and Buffalo, were discontinued on January 5, 1970.

Conrail acquired the terminal in 1976 when it bought the Erie Lackawanna's rail assets. NJ Transit bought Conrail's rail properties in northern New Jersey, including Hoboken Terminal, in 1983.

Numerous streetcar lines (eventually owned and operated by the Public Service Railway), including the Hoboken Inclined Cable Railway, originated/terminated at the station until bustitution was completed on August 7, 1949.[6]

Hoboken Terminal c. 1954
Hoboken Terminal c. 1954

Ferry service from the terminal to lower Manhattan ended on November 22, 1967.[9] It resumed in 1989 on the south side of the terminal and moved back to the restored ferry slips inside the historic terminal on December 7, 2011.[10]

The station was badly damaged during Hurricane Sandy on October 29, 2012, with a 5 feet (1.5 m) storm surge inundating the facility; the water rose as high as 8 feet (2.4 m) in the PATH tunnels. The waiting room reopened in January 2013, while extensive repairs were still in progress.[11][12] Daytime PATH service to midtown Manhattan was restored earlier, on December 19, and pre-Sandy service patterns were gradually restored by March 1, 2013.[13][14][15][16][17]


In December 1985, an NJ Transit train crashed into the concrete bumper at Hoboken Terminal, injuring 54. The 1985 crash was said to have been caused by a lubricant that had been applied to the tracks to test train wheels.[18]

In May 2011, a PATH train crashed in the basement of Hoboken Terminal, causing minor injuries. The NTSB determined the accident was caused by "the failure of the engineer to control the speed of the train entering the station."[19][18]

On the morning of September 29, 2016, an NJ Transit train crashed through a bumper block and into the concourse of the station, killing one person and injuring more than 110 people.[20][21] Tracks 10 through 17 were reopened on October 10, 2016, with most remaining tracks reopened a week later. The pedestrian concourse reopened on May 14, 2017. Track 6 reopened for service in June 2017 and track 5 reopened for service sometime around September 2018. The permanent repairs to the concourse roof and supports are ongoing. In a statement published in February 2019, NJ Transit stated that repairs and renovations are continuing and will last for approximately one year, which translates to estimated completion sometime around early 2020.[22][23]

Notable other uses

In 1930, Thomas Edison was at the controls for the first departure of a regular-service electric multiple unit train from Hoboken Terminal to Montclair. One of the first installations of central air-conditioning in a public space was at the station, as was the first non-experimental use of mobile phones.[24][25]

The station has been used for film shoots, including Funny Girl, Three Days of the Condor, Once Upon a Time in America, The Station Agent, The Curse of the Jade Scorpion, Julie & Julia, Kal Ho Naa Ho, Rod Stewart's Downtown Train video (1990) and Eric Clapton's video for his 1996 single "Change the World".


Commuter rail

Hoboken Terminal is the terminus and namesake for NJ Transit's Hoboken Division, which consists mostly of the former (Erie) Lackawanna commuter routes in northern New Jersey.

Access to other NJ Transit rail lines is available at Newark Penn Station (which also serves Amtrak), Secaucus Junction, or Newark Broad Street.

Rapid transit rail

Track layout
Former cab elevator
to surface shops

PATH trains provide 24-hour service from a three-track underground terminal located north of the surface platforms.[26] Three routes are offered on weekdays, and one route is offered on late nights, weekends and holidays. Entrances are from the main concourse or street, below the Hudson Place bus station with both an elevator and stairs. Travel to Newark Penn Station always requires a transfer, as does weekday service to Journal Square Transportation Center.

     Hoboken–33rd Street (weekdays)
     Hoboken–World Trade Center (weekdays)
     Journal Square–33rd Street (via Hoboken) (late nights & weekends)
G Street Level Exit/Entrance
B1 Mezzanine Fare control, one-way faregates, transfer to NJ Transit services
Platform level
Eastbound      JSQ–33 (via HOB) toward 33rd Street or Journal Square Transportation Center (Christopher Street or Newport)
     HOB–WTC toward World Trade Center (Newport)
Fare control, one-way faregates, transfer to NJ Transit trains and light rail
Island platform, doors will open on the left or right
Handicapped/disabled access
Eastbound      HOB–33 toward 33rd Street (Christopher Street)
     JSQ–33 (via HOB) toward 33rd Street or Journal Square Transportation Center (Christopher Street or Newport)
     HOB–WTC toward World Trade Center (Newport)
Island platform, doors will open on the left or right
Handicapped/disabled access
Eastbound      HOB–33 toward 33rd Street (Christopher Street)
     JSQ–33 (via HOB) toward 33rd Street or Journal Square Transportation Center (Christopher Street or Newport)
Side platform, doors will open on the right
Handicapped/disabled access

Light rail

Hoboken Terminal is the terminus for two of the three Hudson-Bergen Light Rail routes and the Bayonne Flyer. Light rail platforms for which are located south of Track 18 and the terminal building, and provide a pathway connection to 14th Street along the Hudson River.

Ground/platform level
Exit/entrance to 14th Street
and Hoboken Terminal
Track H1      Hoboken–Tonnelle toward Tonnelle Avenue (2nd Street)
     8th Street–Hoboken toward 8th Street (Newport)
     Bayonne Flyer toward 8th Street (rush hours) (Newport)
Island platform, doors will open on the left or right
Handicapped/disabled access
Track H2      Hoboken–Tonnelle toward Tonnelle Avenue (2nd Street)
     8th Street–Hoboken toward 8th Street (Newport)
     Bayonne Flyer toward 8th Street (rush hours) (Newport)
Track H4      Hoboken–Tonnelle toward Tonnelle Avenue (2nd Street)
     8th Street–Hoboken toward 8th Street (Newport)
     Bayonne Flyer toward 8th Street (rush hours) (Newport)
Side platform, doors will open on the left
Handicapped/disabled access


Weekday ferry service is operated by NY Waterway to the Battery Park City Ferry Terminal at the World Financial Center, the West Midtown Ferry Terminal, and Pier 11 at Wall Street on the East River in Lower Manhattan.

Bus service

Current New Jersey Transit Bus Operations are as follows:

Route Destination Major streets

North Bergen
Washington Street
14th Street Viaduct
New York/Bergenline
(peak service only)

Bergenline HBLR station
48th St
Observer Highway
Paterson Plank Road
9th-Congress HBLR station
New York or Bergenline
(peak service only)

North Bergen
Port Imperial (HBLR station)
Boulevard East
(peak service only)
Lakewood Route 18
(peak service only)

Old Bridge Route 18

American Dream Meadowlands
East Rutherford
Paterson Plank Road
9th-Congress HBLR station
Transfer Station

Gates Avenue
Jersey City
Paterson Plank Road
9th-Congress HBLR station
Central Avenue
Journal Square
MLK Drive
Old Bergen Road

North Bergen
Washington Street
14th Street
Willow Ave/Park Ave
48th St
Bergenline HBLR station
Bergenline Avenue

Port Authority Bus Terminal
42nd Street
Washington Street
Willow Avenue
Lincoln Tunnel

Named passenger trains

The Phoebe Snow at Hoboken Terminal in September 1965
The Phoebe Snow at Hoboken Terminal in September 1965

Until the 1960s, Hoboken Terminal was also a major intercity station, serving as the New York-area terminus for several Lackawanna and Erie Lackawanna streamliner trains. Passenger trains extended beyond the daily commuter market to Buffalo, Chicago and northeastern Pennsylvania.

Name Operators Destination Year begun Year discontinued
Atlantic Express and Pacific Express Erie Railroad, then Erie-Lackawanna Chicago, Illinois 1885, but started departing from Hoboken in 1956 1965
Chicago Limited Lackawanna Railroad DLW terminal in Buffalo, New York, continuing as an express New York Central train to Chicago, the westbound counterpart to the Lackawanna Limited 1917 1941
Erie Limited Erie Railroad, then Erie-Lackawanna Chicago, Illinois Began in 1929, but started departing from Hoboken in 1956 1963
Lake Cities Erie Railroad, then Erie-Lackawanna Chicago, Illinois Began in 1939, but started departing from Hoboken in 1956 1970
Lackawanna Limited Lackawanna Railroad Buffalo, until 1941 continuing to Chicago 1901 1949
Merchants Express Lackawanna Railroad Scranton 1937 1959
New York Mail Lackawanna Railroad, then Erie-Lackawanna via Nickel Plate Road Buffalo, continuing to Chicago 1937 1968
New Yorker/Westerner Lackawanna Railroad, then Erie-Lackawanna via Nickel Plate Road Buffalo, continuing to Chicago 1936 1963
Owl Lackawanna Railroad, then Erie-Lackawanna via Nickel Plate Road Buffalo, continuing to St. Louis 1919 1968
Phoebe Snow Lackawanna Railroad, then Erie-Lackawanna DL&W Terminal, Buffalo 1949 1966
Pocono Express Lackawanna Railroad Buffalo 1936 1965[35]
Scrantonian Lackawanna Railroad Scranton 1942 1952
Twilight Lackawanna Railroad Buffalo 1950 1965[35]

Design, designation, and restoration

New clock tower
New clock tower

Designed by architect Kenneth M. Murchison in the Beaux-Arts style, the rail and ferry terminal buildings were constructed in 1907 by the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad. The terminal building is listed on the New Jersey Register of Historic Places[36] and the National Register of Historic Places (added in 1973 as #73001102 as the Erie-Lackawanna Railroad and Ferry Terminal).[37] It has been undergoing extensive renovations which were projected for completion in 2011.[5]

The large main waiting room, with its floral and Greek Revival motifs in tiled stained glass by Louis Comfort Tiffany set atop bands of pale cement,[24] is generally considered one of the finest in the U.S. aesthetically. The terminal exterior extends to over four stories and has a distinguished copper-clad façade with ornate detailing. Its single-story base is constructed of rusticated Indiana limestone. A grand double stair with decorative cast-iron railings within the main waiting room provides an entrance to the upper-level ferry concourse.

A 225-foot (69 m) clock tower was originally built with the terminal over a century ago, but was dismantled in the early 1950s due to structural damage and deterioration from weather damage. A new clock tower, replicating the original, was constructed during the terminal's centennial year of 2007 and was fully erect that November. The replica tower has 4-foot-high (1.2 m) copper letters spelling out "LACKAWANNA", which are lit at night.

The original ferry slips inside the historic terminal were restored in 2011.[10]

The terminal is considered a milestone in American transportation development, combining rail, ferry, subway, streetcar (buses were added later, and light-rail was added even later), and pedestrian facilities in one of the most innovatively designed and engineered structures in the nation. Hoboken Terminal was also one of the first stations in the world to employ the Bush-type train shed, designed by and named for Lincoln Bush of the DL&W, which quickly became ubiquitous in station design.[24] The station is unusual for a New York City area commuter railroad terminal in that it still has low-level platforms, requiring passengers to use stairs on the train to board and alight.

Environs and access

Map of the five train-to-ferry transfer points along the west shore of Hudson River circa 1900
At Warrington Plaza
At Warrington Plaza

Though the passenger facilities are located within Hoboken, large parts of the infrastructure that supports them are located in Jersey City. The Hoboken/Jersey City line cuts across the rail yard at a northwest diagonal from the river to the intersection of Grove Street and Newark Street. It is at this corner that Observer Highway begins running parallel to the tracks and creating a de facto border for Hoboken.[38] The Long Slip (created with the landfilling of Harsimus Cove) creates the southern perimeter of the station, separating it from Jersey City's Newport neighborhood.

Motor vehicle access to the station is extremely limited. At the eastern end of Observer Highway buses are permitted to enter their terminal. Other vehicles are required to do a dog-leg turn onto Hudson Place. This 0.05-mile-long (0.080 km)[39] street (designated CR 736) is the only one with motor vehicle traffic adjacent to the station and acts as a pick-up/drop off point, and hosts a dedicated taxi stand. Egress from the terminal requires travelling north (for at least one block) on River Street.

Hudson Place ends at Warringtron Plaza. On this square one finds the main entrance to the waiting room and the vehicle entrances to the currently unused original ferry slips. A statue of Sam Sloan, president of the DL&W, moved during renovations faces the loading docks of the nearby post office. The plaza was named in honor of George Warrington, influential in the creation of NJ Transit, and as its executive director enabled the purchase and preservation of the station.

In 2009, pedestrian access to the terminal from the south was made possible with the opening of a new segment of the Hudson River Waterfront Walkway.[40] The closing of this gap along the promenade nearly completes the stretch from the Morris Canal to Weehawken Cove, with signage along the concourse at the rail head inside the terminal indicating that it is officially part of the walkway.

Hoboken Terminal viewed from the northeast, with Jersey City skyline in the background
Hoboken Terminal viewed from the northeast, with Jersey City skyline in the background



  1. ^ "QUARTERLY RIDERSHIP TRENDS ANALYSIS" (PDF). NJ Transit. Archived from the original (PDF) on December 27, 2012. Retrieved January 4, 2013.
  2. ^ "How Many Riders Use NJ Transit's Hoboken Train Station?". Hoboken Patch. Retrieved July 18, 2018.
  3. ^ "PATH Ridership Report" (PDF). Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. 2018. Retrieved February 4, 2019.
  4. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009.
  5. ^ a b "Hoboken Ferry Terminal Restoration Enters Final Phase" (Press release). NJ Transit. September 16, 2009. Retrieved February 5, 2010.
  6. ^ a b French, Kenneth (2002). Railroads of Hoboken and Jersey City. Images of Rail. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing. p. 125. ISBN 978-0-7385-0966-2.
  7. ^ "The Erie and the DL&W Were Merged in 1960". Archived from the original on March 30, 2010. Retrieved May 30, 2010.
  8. ^ "Erie Lackwanna Railroad and Predecessors". Archived from the original on June 10, 2008. Retrieved May 30, 2010.
  9. ^ "November 1967 ~ The End of Trans-Cross Hudson Ferry Service, by Theodore W. Scull (World Ship Society)
  10. ^ a b Fox New York:Hoboken Ferry Terminal Reopens, December 7, 2011
  11. ^ "Sandy-battered iconic Hoboken Terminal waiting room to reopen Tuesday".
  12. ^ "PATH train repairs to cost $300M, with Hoboken station staying closed 'for weeks'". November 27, 2012. Archived from the original on May 26, 2019. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
  13. ^ Hack, Charles (December 19, 2012). "Hoboken commuters' verdict: reopened PATH train service was 'flawless'". The Jersey Journal. Retrieved December 20, 2012.
  14. ^ Newman, Andy (January 9, 2013). "PATH Trains to Resume 24-Hour Service". City Room. Retrieved April 30, 2018.
  15. ^ "PATH Trains to Resume 24-Hour Service Tonight". The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey. January 9, 2013. Retrieved February 11, 2013.
  16. ^ "Governors Christie and Cuomo Announce Full Restoration of PATH Service Between Hoboken and World Trade Center". The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey. January 29, 2013. Retrieved February 11, 2013.
  17. ^ Ferrer, Ana M. (January 10, 2013). "24-hour PATH service to 33rd St. restored for Jersey City, Hoboken, Newark riders". Retrieved June 13, 2018.
  18. ^ a b
  19. ^
  20. ^ [1]
  21. ^ "At Least 1 Dead, More Than 100 Hurt After Train Crash At Hoboken, NJ Station". September 29, 2016. Retrieved September 29, 2016.
  22. ^ Moriarty, Thomas (May 14, 2017). "Hoboken Terminal concourse reopened 7 months after fatal crash". NJ Advance Media for Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  23. ^ "Hoboken Terminal: Ceiling Repair & Renovation Work - Beginning March 2019". New Jersey Transit on its Alerts and Advisories page. February 2019. Retrieved February 15, 2019.
  24. ^ a b c "1907-2007: 100 Years - Hoboken Terminal" (PDF). NJ Transit. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 31, 2015. Retrieved February 6, 2011.
  25. ^ La Gorce, Tammy (May 23, 2004). "Cool Is a State of Mind (and Relief)". The New York Times. Retrieved April 10, 2008. Several decades later, the Hoboken Terminal distinguished itself as the nation's first centrally air-conditioned public space.
  26. ^ Dougherty, Peter (2006) [2002]. Tracks of the New York City Subway 2006 (3rd ed.). Dougherty. OCLC 49777633 – via Google Books.
  27. ^ NJT bus 22 schedule
  28. ^ NJT bus 22 schedule
  29. ^ NJT bus 23 schedule
  30. ^ NJT bus 68 schedule
  31. ^ NJT bus 85 schedule
  32. ^ NJT bus 87 schedule
  33. ^ NJT bus 89 schedule Archived February 8, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  34. ^ NJT bus 126 schedule
  35. ^ a b "E-L Passenger Service Decline".
  36. ^ "NJ/NRHP".
  37. ^ New Jersey - Hudson County, National Register of Historic Places. Accessed June 13, 2007.
  38. ^ Hudson County New Jersey Street Map. Hagstrom Map Company, Inc. 2008. ISBN 0-88097-763-9.
  39. ^ "Hudson County 736 straight line diagram" (PDF). New Jersey Department of Transportation. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 18, 2012. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  40. ^ Baldwin, Carly (August 26, 2009). "Long Slip pedestrian bridge from Jersey City to Hoboken to open in September". The Jersey Journal. Jersey City. Retrieved February 21, 2010.

External links

This page was last edited on 13 January 2020, at 19:38
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