Category Archives: Subway

Second Avenue Subway and the Politicians

See the empty tunnel. It is part of the Second Avenue Subway.

The problem is that financing this monster is bigger than New York City. It is bigger than the giant Metropolitan Transportation Authority. It even stresses the State of New York although Governor Cuomo has helped a lot. Well, there is always Washington.

NY Mayor is a pain in the tail. Hope his wonderful Presidential candidate looses, but not to a Republican.

Two members of Congress said they were “deeply concerned” this afternoon following the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s plan to slash $1 billion in funding from the proposed Second Avenue subway.

Congressman Charles Rangel and Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, two Democrats who represent Manhattan neighborhoods where the subway is being built or is supposed to eventually reach, said the authority was making a “huge mistake.”

“While we are delighted that the state and city were able to reach an agreement to move the MTA’s capital plan forward, we are deeply concerned that roughly one-half of the reduction in the cost of plan … is coming from the Second Avenue subway,” the veteran lawmakers said.

They pointed out the $26.1 billion MTA capital plan, formally passed yesterday, includes only $535 million for the Second Avenue subway, most of which will be spent for preliminary engineering and design, as opposed to the $1.5 billion originally proposed.

The first segment of the Second Avenue Subway, scheduled to open at the end of next year, will go from 63rd Street to 96th Street. The MTA had originally planned to pay for the tunneling north from 96th to 125th streets by 2019. But under the revised plan, that work will be deferred until 2020 or later.

Adam Lisberg, a spokesman for the MTA, told the Observer the authority is “full speed ahead” on the Second Avenue subway, and made the decision for practical and not financial reasons. “We eventually came to the realization we wouldn’t be able to get a tunnel boring machine at the end of 2019 and all the money in world wouldn’t get us to that point. It would be silly to keep a billion for tunneling when we wouldn’t be able to tunnel,” he said.

But this was little comfort to Mr. Rangel and Ms. Maloney. The East Side of Manhattan has been waiting for a new Second Avenue subway since the old elevated line was torn down a century ago. “Based on the current schedule, one hundred years will have passed and we will still be waiting. This ‘go slow’ approach to the Second Avenue subway is a huge mistake,” they said.

Oddly enough, another leading elected official in the area, Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito of East Harlem, said at an unrelated City Hall press conference today that she was unaware the cuts had even taken place.

“I’m not aware of what you’re referencing,” she told a reporter. “I’ll look into that.”

To really see New York City inequality, just ride the subway


New York is increasingly a tale of two states — and Mayor Bill de Blasio presides over the superrich one. This would be good news for a mayor with a real plan: That is, we’ve got the money to start fixing our subway woes, and a historic chance to do it.

De Blasio is still on his inequality kick, although he has run out of ideas about how to fix it.

But the real inequality crisis is not within Gotham. It’s between New York City and the rest of the state.

Just look at the figures from a jobs report by the state comptroller, Tom DiNapoli. Over the half-decade since we got out of recession, New York City has created three out of four of the state’s new jobs, even though we have only 42 percent of the state’s population. Since 2009, Gotham has seen job growth of 11.3 percent…

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NYC subway Line 7 extension may transform Manhattan neighborhood

Ancien Hippie

Work crews are scrambling underneath New York City to finish the city’s first major new subway stop in 25 years, a fast-track project intended to revitalize a long-neglected slice of  Manhattan.

The city’s transit authority has been working for seven years on the $2.4 billion extension of the Number 7 subway line, once known mainly for transporting fans to New York Mets baseball games and the U.S. Open tennis tournament. Now the line will extend far west to 11th Avenue in Manhattan, a run-down neighborhood long known as Hell’s Kitchen that is home to a major bus station and tunnel entrances to New Jersey.

Like most big infrastructure projects in U.S. cities, the extension has suffered some delays, but it has moved along far faster than a Second Avenue subway that is still under construction after more than 80 years of planning.

Trees and plants are placed near the entrance to the still unfinished 34th St. Hudson Yards stop for the Number 7 subway line in New York

The project was sped along by former Mayor…

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AirTrain Will Finally Connect LaGuardia To Subway, Cuomo Announces


New York will build an AirTrain to connect the hellish human zoo known as LaGuardia Airport to civilization, NY Governor Cuomo announced this morning at a breakfast hosted by the Association for a Better New York. “You can’t get to LaGuardia by train today,” Cuomo said. “And that really is inexcusable. That is something we’re going to correct over the next several years.”

Cuomo said the AirTrain will connect with the 7 train and the LIRR at Willetts Point. The train will run about 1.5 miles along the Grand Central Parkway, “in an area that we believe won’t create an undue burden to any of the neighboring structures, and create a ‘one ride’ from the subway system or the Long Island Railroad to LaGuardia, which is truly long overdue.”

Cuomo also said the state is looking for a high speed ferry terminal to connect LaGuardia to Manhattan, as…

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60 years after its demise, rare videos reveal Third Avenue elevated line


Here’s some rare newsreel footage of the very last elevated subway line to run through Midtown Manhattan — along Third Avenue — which ceased operations in the very different city of 60 years ago.

There were originally four elevated lines running almost the entire length of Manhattan. But there were complaints about the trains’ noise from tenants of largely long-gone tenements adjoining the tracks, and from businesses below, which complained about the steel infrastructure blocking light and traffic.


The elevated lines along Second, Sixth and Ninth Avenues, made redundant (at least on the west side) by underground subway routes, shut down and were demolished between 1938 and 1942.

But the Third Avenue El received a reprieve until after the war. That’s because plans for a Second Avenue Subway drawn up in the 1920s had stalled, and tearing down the El would strain the East Side’s only subway line on Lexington…

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Platforms for Art Under the City (If You Notice)


Had not been in New York City literally for years. It was about Halloween last Fall. Heading from Times Square to bus terminal I saw these really great pictures painted on the (beautifully white) wall. Thought they were old-time “trick and treaters”. Guess I had better not give up my writing job for an art critic job. The picture at the top was NOT “trick and treaters”. It was  Jane Dickson’s mosaics of New Year’s Eve revelers. As much as I enjoy them, you run the risk of getting plowed under at rush hour if you pause to admire them along the passageway that connects the Times Square and Port Authority bus terminal subway stations where they’re located.

An Art Tour of the Subway System With Sandra Bloodworth, the Director of MTA Arts & Design. A great article by RALPH GARDNER JR. Ms. Bloodworth is also the co-author, with William Ayres, an…

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