Buffalo has two (Amtrak) train stations. One is called the Depew station, and is certainly interesting. But the other is located downtown on Exchange Street, which is my lifeline to New York City -- as if I'm always rolling back and forth there, which I do not these days because it's always expensive to go, and because, well, now COVID. But, I like the idea of being in some way at New York City's doorstep.
Last weekend I stopped by the new station which opened the weekend before and took pictures and videos. You can view the result at the New Exchange Street Station Google Photo Album.
Buffalo New Exchange Street Station
The train to New York is both comfortable yet suspiciously impractical. Booked well enough in advance, some flights out of Buffalo to New York are actually about the same cost, or, certainly not much more expensive, than a two-way Amtrak ticket. And flights are usually listed as taking just an hour and a half, though, in practice, it takes about one hour. The train takes a whopping nine hours and it is generally accepted that in fact it will take longer. There's always some issue in the journey that causes a delay.
But that comfort thing is a big deal if you're in no particular hurry. There are no stifling crowds and none of the airport-grade security checkpoints. You just show up about a half hour before the train's arrival, board, then take advantage of plenty of leg room, wi-fi, and the occassional jaunt to the cafe car for drinks and snacks. It's nine (advertised) hours, yes, but they are actually pleasent making plane versus train worth the debate. The other real advantage is that the train slides into New York's Penn Station which is smack in the middle of where you likely want to be if you're going to New York, and connections to any other place you might.
When you consider the airport endpoint hassles, and the time getting from the airport to the places you want to actually be in the city when you arrive, the total time you need to spend in a discombulated transition state dramatically narrows the time gap advantage between the plane and train. For many, the comfort factor then settles the argument.
By Dave for Personal Blog.
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