Phase I of the Second Avenue Subway Now 78.7 Percent Complete–and Still on Track

February 26, 2015

Image: MTA Capital Construction / Rehema Trimiew

It seems to be taking forever for the Second Avenue Subway (SAS) to be finished, but alas, never say never. Yesterday evening, community members and MTA Capital Construction officials gathered at Temple Israel for the SAS eighth quarterly workshop to discuss the line’s construction updates, future plans and to take any comments or concerns from citizens. In his opening statement, MTA Capital Construction President Dr. Michael Horodniceanu reported that Phase I is now 78.7 percent complete (as of February 1, 2015). The number seemed to please many, but in light of the MTA’s budget crisis, the top question on everyone’s mind was still: “Is this thing on schedule to be completed in December 2016?” Dr. Horodniceanu reassured everyone, “We’ve been having these workshops for four years, and the date has stayed the same.”

Michael Horodniceanu, Sam Schwartz, MTA Capital Construction, Community Information Center, second avenue subway workshop, temple israel, sas cicMTA Capital Construction President Dr. Michael Horodniceanu giving his opening statement. Image by 6sqft

A focal point of the meeting was the design of the station and the sidewalks surrounding the entrances. Like Washington, D.C.’s Metro, the new subway stations will have a mezzanine level and a platform level, which means you can say goodbye to those duplicitous concrete columns. In addition to better safety, the design will allow cooler, fresh air to flow throughout station for better rider comfort. All the new stations will be ADA accessible as well—something severely lacking across the entire network. And again, like D.C.’s Metro, other stations will feature a beautiful arched ceilings. The 96th Street station may, however, take the cake as far as design with its Italian porcelain tiles lining the walls and an architectural grille ceiling to hide all those ugly conduits.

Second Avenue Subway construction“The tracks are set in concrete from 92nd to 87th street and 99th to 105th street,” Charles Maass, P.E. senior supervisor construction engineer at Parsons Brinckerhoff told us last night. 

Second Avenue Subway constructionImage: MTA Capital Construction / Rehema Trimiew 

second avenue subway, sas, 72nd street staion platform, subway platform, phase 172nd Street platform © Metropolitan Transportation Authority

86th street station, subway entrance, sas renderingImage: 86th Street subway, entrance © Metropolitan Transportation Authority

Another highlight of the workshop was a discussion over the streetscape. Sidewalks will be equipped with bike racks, benches and new low-energy street lamps. Green space will include various trees with large and small canopies.

second avenue subway, sas, 96th street station, phase 1

72nd street subway entrance, second ave subway, sas renderingImage: Future 96th Street subway entrance (top); 72nd Street entrance (bottom) © Metropolitan Transportation Authority

Come May, you’ll be able to drive a train through a simulator and also see samples of the materials they’re using in the stations. Right now, those interested in putting on a hardhat and heading underground can also schedule a tour of the construction by e-mailing [email protected].

For more information about the SAS, visit their website or their Community Information Center at 1628 Second Avenue to see exhibits about the project.


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