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Thread: Worthy Transit Improvements

  1. #1

    Default Worthy Transit Improvements

    List of transit projects that should get built.

    New two track tunnel under the Hudson from NJ to Penn Station, with a connection to Grand Central for Amtrak, NJ Transit and Metro North's Harlem line.

    Metro North access to Penn Station from their Hudson line via Amtrak's West Side connection with stops at 125th street and the West Side rail yard/ stadium/ Jacob Javits/ Olympic Village.

    Access to Penn Station from Metro North's New Haven line via Hells Gate bridge with stops in the Bronx and Long Island City (Sunny Side).

    New East River tunnel from LIRR's Flatbush line to Lower Manhattan with link to the PATH line, intergrate the service and run trains from Newark Airport-Downtown Newark-Jersey City-WTC-Fulton Street-FLatbush-Jamaica-JFK.

    Second Ave Subway.

    7 train extension to connect directly with PABT, Penn Station (Farley complex), West Side development area/stadium.

    N train extension to Laguardia.

    East Side Access for LIRR

    West Side Light rail, utilizing part of the old Conrail viaduct from Battery park up the West Side.

    Extension of the L train to 10th ave and across the Hudson to Hoboken, and possibly Allied Jct.

    New cross Harbor freight tunnel connecting Brooklyn with either Staten Island or Jersey City.

    Extension of the Hudson Bergen light rail across the Bayonne Bridge to Staten Island (could be done without removing lanes). With service either running along the North Shore to St.George or South to the College of Staten Island.

    Moving Amtrak into the new Farley facility, moving MSG into a new stadium arena on the West Side. Improving the current Penn Station set up for LIRR and NJ Transit passengers by removing MSG and replacing with hotels or office buildings designed to incorporate an atrium over the main level of the current Penn Station that will allow light in and intergrate improved concession and retail areas into the new hotel or office buildings built on the former MSG site.

  2. #2

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    West Side light rail right of way near Trump World development.

  3. #3

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    Welcome to the forum Thomas!

    I dunno if this topic is going to get moved or not - since this has little to do with skyscrapers. It's interesting to see the Trump development and the covering up of the Amtrak tracks. I gotta add that to the list of places to check out the next time I walk around Manhattan on a nice day!

    Your list of projects is pretty thorough. Crains NY weekly had an article on this a few weeks ago. It listed these, and a few others, that should be built so the region can stay economically competitive. The total came out to $60 billion, but spread out over several years, it's not so bad. The few projects I would add are direct rail access from Midtown/Penn/GCT and extenstions to the E,F,7,and (2/5 lines in Brooklyn). A few crosstown lines at 125th, 57th, 34th, and Canal wouldn't be bad either!

    I hope Farley is done right - even old Penn Station being rebuilt. We could get some really great towers in on the West Side!

  4. #4
    Moderator NYatKNIGHT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Manhattan - South Village

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    You mentioned a light rail for Staten Island. As of now, the most likely corridor would run along the north shore.

  5. #5

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    All of these projects are worthy and certainly should be built. *But this is NYC, which for a host of reasons has decided it can live on borrowed time: can anyone name significant projects that have been built in the last forty years? *Consider...

    - *JFK is a horrific mess, more worthy of a third-world country than "capital of the world"
    - *New York has *less* track line than it did in the forties. *It doesn't build; it simply removes (consider the trolleys and els that no longer exist)
    - *The sewer known as Penn Station is entirely worthy of Vin Scully's quotation: "In the old Penn Station, one entered the city like a god; now one scurries in like a rat."

    It's time for the city to start thinking big again.

  6. #6

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    Water tunnel #3. Largest project in NYC history.

    Verrazano-Narrows Bridge

    North River sewage treatment plant. When completed in 80s, all NYC waste water was treated. The Newtown Creek plant, city's largest, is getting a $2 billion renovation.

    The Air Train.

    The removal of the els was a positive.

  7. #7

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    Come now, Zippy.

    Point taken about the the jumbo water tunnel and the investments made to treat sewage. *But you're pushing it when you name the Verrazano as a recent development -- it's about to turn forty years old. *The elevated trains were *not* removed for aesthetic reasons; they were taken down because it was expected that subways would replace them. *Does it make much sense that the entire East Side is served by a single subway line?

    As for the Air Train: let's ignore that its main accomplishment to date has been to kill the driver on a test lap. *What sort of accomplishment is it to create a monorail from the airport to...JAMAICA? *That will be a real boon to travellers. *Picture the poor fellow from Singapore (or London, or Paris, or Hong Kong), accustomed to bullet trains from airport to downtown. *He arrives in New York and is told he can take a train to JAMAICA. *If this is your idea of progress, well, you may have it. *I guess I'll stuff myself into a cab, listen to Elmo tell me buckle up, and bounce my way up and down decayed highways to get to my destination. *

    My point is simple and incontrovertible: New York is living off instrastructure investments that are now a century old. *Improvements that should be seen as essential are viewed as the equivalent of the moon landing: too big, too expensive, too risky. *The vaunted Penn Station proposal is now over a decade old and there hasn't been so much as bulldozer near the place.

    New York is not keeping pace with other grand cities. *This is painful but true. *

  8. #8

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    Read your own post. You said 40 years.

    I didn't say that the els were removed for any reason. I just said that their removal was a the neighborhoods they passed through.

    An inappropriate remark about the Air Train just to make a debating point.

  9. #9

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    Fair enough: the Verrazano is thirty-nine years old; ergo, if you go by a forty-year marker, New York must be building bridges like crazy. *(Obvious corollary: by a *hundred-year measurement, the subway is not so old; in fact, it's only 99.)

    If you asked the average East Sider -- *not* someone whose windows overlooked the tracks -- say, the average East Sider who is walking fifteen minutes to reach a dangerously overstuffed Lexington Ave subway, "Would you prefer to have the elevated trains back?" the answer would be a resounding "yes."

    In what way is referring to the most unfortunate and unnecessary death of the Air Train's driver "inappropriate"? * You refuse to address the obvious point, which is indeed appropriate: why was a billion dollars funneled into a slow, teeny train designed to take passengers *away* from Manhattan? *How many travellers do you know who like to take slow, indirect routes to their destination? *

    Mr. Chimp, do you really think New York is keeping up to speed with other major cities? *

  10. #10

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    The JFK Airtrain is not a Monorail (EWR is), it's a Light Rail that is compatible with the LIRR's third rail power.

    The planning going on right now envisions the Airtrain making a direct connection to the LIRR's tracks at Jamaica station. However this is about 10 years away, to facilitate the direct one seat ride to Manhattan they need to...

    Build the East Side Access project (which just received support from the President to receive Federal transit money when the program is re-funded either this fiscal year or next). This is separate from the $5 Billion dollar Lower Manhattan transit program currently under development with FEMA, the Port Authority and the MTA.

    The East Side Access project will connect the LIRR to Grand Central terminal thus freeing some slots at Penn for the Airtrain to operate directly into Penn Station. Mayor Bloomberg also included a new East river tunnel in his plan for Lower Manhattan which would connect with the LIRR's Atlantic Ave/Fltabush line and provide another direct connection for the Airtrain.

    Next the MTA and Port Authority have to develop and new Airtrain car that can ride on the rails with both HEAVY LIRR trains and lighter Airtrains around JFK's terminals. Crash standards are the main factor.

    The Airtrain line is powered by a compatible power source as the LIRR, meaning once a hybrid vehicle is designed to survive a crash with a LIRR train the only thing preventing running the same train from JFK over the Airtrain's Van Wyck guideway and onto the LIRR's tracks are the actual connection of the tracks.

    The NY State Economic development corp is actively seeking a contractor to build the new vehicles and connect the Airtrain and LIRR tracks, again they have to wait until slots are available when the East Side Access project diverts some LIRR trains from PENN to Grand Central.

  11. #11

  12. #12

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    I appreciate all this information, Thomas, and it's heartening to know that perhaps in a decade someone can arrive at JFK and actually take a train into Manhattan.

    But...and this is a big but...why must it be this complicated? *How did English engineers, with a monstrous airport that is almost as confusing and unruly as JFK, manage to connect Heathrow and London with a lightning-fast train five years ago? *

  13. #13

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    Mr Elmo, or whatever that avatar thingy is:

    You asked a question, and I answered it. Then you forgot what you posted. You have made another error in your last post. The last subway was built in the 30s, not 99 years ago. If you don't understand why that remark was inappropriate, that's your problem.

    I don't intend to debate you on the problems of the lower East Side. The 2nd ave subway is in planning, and should alleviate some of the congestion. If you think that an el would be welcomed, go to City Hall and run it by Mike Bloomberg. Let us know what he says.

    There are several projects being studied now, many of which have been discussed in this forum. By the way, in recent studies, NYC ranks quite high in moving people around.

    I suspect you've had a bad day; i hope you have a pleasant evening.

  14. #14

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    The errors are all mine, Zippy. *I am entirely in the wrong in everything I have written. *

    You have a pleasant evening yourself.

  15. #15
    Moderator NYatKNIGHT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Manhattan - South Village

    Default Worthy transit improvements

    Of course JD is right. While other cities have made great strides, there hasn't been almost any significant infrastructure constructed in the past few decades. Zippy named a few, but come on, for what the city needs it's clearly not enough. That list of projects is daunting.

    But there are plenty of things that have improved over time despite the decay of the infrastructure. The parks look as good as ever, and new ones are under construction. There is far less litter and pollution since the industrial revolution began - look at any old photo. The water is cleaner, the air is clearer, the streets are (generally) less littered. The crime rate is down, the mafia doesn't control the city, and the subways are safe for all. Skyscrapers are still rising as is the population. So the City has been paying attention to other necessities and letting the infrastructure take a back seat.

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