Hotel Pennsylvania to be renovated, not razed

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NEW YORK — New York’s famed Hotel Pennsylvania is safe from the wrecking ball, rescued by the economy rather than preservationists.

Plans to knock down the nearly century-old hotel, where jazz great Glenn Miller and his orchestra broadcast in the 1940s, and replace it with a 67-story office tower are “on the shelf,” said Steven Roth, chairman of the Vornado Realty Trust, which has owned the building since 1998.

Roth, who will assume the additional role of CEO at Vornado on April 15, said the company is close to finding a partner and principal developer to help restore some of the hotel’s former grandeur. The hotel is across from Madison Square Garden and Penn Station.

While its lobby retains traces of its origins and it still has the “Pennsylvania 6-5000” phone number made famous by Miller’s orchestra, the Hotel Pennsylvania is currently a budget-priced destination with a less-than-luxurious reputation among tourists.

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