SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Two pieces of the historic Grand Central Terminal in New York City will have a new home: Union Station in Springfield.
Two restored wooden passenger benches will be relocated from Grand Central to Union Station to be a centerpiece of the restoration. Congressman Richard Neal had the idea, after a four-hour tour of Grand Central. He called the stationmaster, who told him that there were several benches available in the storage area.
“We came to the conclusion that they would fit nicely on the eastern and western side of the concourse at Union Station, where ticketing will occur. Anybody who has seen Grand Central Terminal, you will quickly conclude it takes your breath away, and I can tell you when people see Union Station, it is going to take their breath away,” the Springfield Democrat said.
A plaque will be made for the benches, to explain their history and where they came from. Part of the deal is that if the Springfield Redevelopment Authority decides for any reason not to use the benches, that they will be returned to Grand Central.
Springfield’s Union Station is set to open to the public on June 24.
Congressman Neal said that he is urging law enforcement to investigate how Union Station’s original benches were taken without anyone knowing, during the reconstruction process.