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Coming Together and Growing Better

From 1880 until 1906, George Roberts and Alexander J Cassatt, PRR's fifth and seventh presidents, respectivly shifted the roads emphasis from expansion to consolidation and refinment, in other words, coming together and growing better. In the 1880's the Pennsy aquired lines from Philly east across New Jersey to the shore and constructed lines up to the Schuylkill River into Reading territory. In 1902 the PW&B and B&P came together as the Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington RailRoad. PB&W and B&O together formed the Washington Terminal Co., which constructed a new Union Station in Washington that opened in 1907. The PB&W was leased to the PRR in 1917. Other major additions were the extensions of the GR&I north to Mackinaw city, Michigan (1882); construction of the Trenton Cutoff, a freight line by passing Philadelphia (1892); and aquisition of the western New York and Pennsylvania railroad, which reached Buffalo and Rochester, New York. Pennsylvania Rail Road had long been at competitive disadvantage for New York passanger traffic to the New York Central, which had a terminal, Grand Central Station on Manhatten Island. Pennsy's aquisition of the Long Island railroad in 1900 gave impetus to its desire for rail access to Manhatten. After studying proposals for bridges and tunnels, PRR began constructing the Pennsylvania station in 1904 in midtown Manhatten. Two tunnels under the Hudson river, four tunnels under the East river, and a double-track line across the Jersey Meadows to connect it to the main line to Philadelphia east of Newark. All electrified with a third rail system, Penn station opened in 1910.

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