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Thread: Second Avenue Subway Project

  1. #331


    Ugh, more glass egs

  2. #332
    Senior Member
    Join Date
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    I can see Stuy Town

    Default Construction Start today!

    From NY1

    April 23, 2007

    Drivers on the Upper East Side can expect major headaches as construction begins on the long-awaited Second Avenue Subway.

    Crews are set to start excavating sections of Second Avenue between 91st and 96th Street today, and concrete barriers and fences are set to be installed tomorrow.

    Drivers can expect major traffic disruptions and parking restrictions in the area for the next 18 months.

    Beginning tomorrow, two left lanes will be closed from 93rd to 98th Streets. There will also be no stopping or standing from 91st to 98th Street.

    The first section of the 2nd Avenue subway will run from 63rd Street to 96th Street and will serve as an extension of the Q train.

    The first phase will cost about $3.9 billion and is expected to be finished by 2013.

  3. #333


    My garage is on 94th and 2nd. This is going to be fun.

  4. #334
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    Nov 2005


    So it begins...

    Construction of the Second Avenue Subway is underway!

    The first construction contract involves the construction of new tunnels between 92nd and 63rd Streets, the excavation of the launch box for the tunnel boring (TBM) machine at just south of 92nd to 95th Streets, and access shafts at 69th and 72nd Streets. These shafts will be excavated toward the end of contract One and be used for the subsequent construction of the 72nd Street station. Contract One is expected take 40 months to complete.

    Traffic Advisory:
    Traffic lanes in the vicinity of 2nd Avenue and 96th Street are closed to prepare the site for the start of construction
    West Side of Second Avenue: No Standing 7AM – 10AM & 4PM – 7PM Loading & Unloading 10AM – 4AM Monday – Friday
    East Side of Second Avenue: No Standing Any Time
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  5. #335


    May 13, 2007

    Caught in the Headlights

    The residents of one building standing in the way of the Second Avenue subway are ambivalent about being uprooted to make way for the long-awaited project.

    Liz O. Baylen for The New York Times
    In the apartment house at Second Avenue and East 72nd Street, feelings of hope,
    doubt and denial.


    AS the Upper East Side braces for the commotion and transformation that will undoubtedly mark the first phase of construction of the Second Avenue subway, a very few of the neighborhood’s residents face a more dramatic change. To make room for subway stations and other components of the system, some buildings and the people who live in them will have to go.

    Among the condemned is a brown, five-story building on the northwest corner of 72nd Street and Second Avenue. The building, whose official address is 253-259 East 72nd Street, was built in 1881 and according to the landlord currently houses some 30 tenants.

    A disharmony of attitudes resides there, too. Hope flourishes in one apartment while doubt lingers down the hall. Denial lives upstairs. Tenants are fluent in a language of uncertainty, and yet there are hints that they consider the matter settled, as if the wrecking ball had already had its way. When speaking of their building, their apartments and their lives within them, they tend to slip into the past tense.

    To elucidate the intricacies of eminent domain and real estate issues, as well as the project’s status and timeline, representatives of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority have attended meetings of the local community board.

    Under federal law, the authority must pay reasonable moving expenses for residential tenants and offer at least one comparable replacement dwelling in the same neighborhood, if possible, or if not, nearby or in a similar neighborhood where housing costs are within the tenants’ means. If comparable dwellings are not available, the agency will provide other assistance. In addition to the moving expenses and help with relocation, displaced renters are eligible for up to $5,250, and tenants must be given 90 days’ notice before they are required to leave. (Regulations covering commercial tenants are slightly different.)

    None of this will happen, however, until after a public hearing, currently scheduled for September, at which time tenants will be formally advised of their situation. Some outward-looking residents consider their own temporary inconvenience against the lasting benefits of a Second Avenue subway and muster praise for the much-heralded project. Others feel themselves forsaken — dispensable extras in a metropolitan adaptation of the old kicked-out-of-Paradise story. Perhaps, this latter faction hopes, the government will abort the project in a last-minute flush of humanism or at least have the decency to run out of money.

    The Second Avenue subway has long taunted New York with suggestions of itself, leaving the city stranded on the platform, peering down the dark tunnel, checking its watch. However, a groundbreaking ceremony last month has, according to officials, irrevocably nudged the legend toward its vast subterranean denouement. There is a New York-bound Second Avenue subway train approaching. This is the story, in glimpses, of one building, the one on East 72nd Street, that will make way for it.

    Sally Ardrey

    Second-floor one-bedroom

    It is the third day of spring, and the windows in Sally Ardrey’s corner apartment are open. Outside, the intersection is alive with engines and dissident horns, tuned to the changing of the traffic lights and borne in on the year’s first drafts of warm air.

    “You look up from the desk or the phone, and you have the feeling of the traffic and the life of the city in the room,” she says. Sixteen years in the one-bedroom apartment (after five years in a studio upstairs) have left her no less enamored of its charms. She recently installed a new black and white tile floor in her kitchen: a symbolic gesture of affection toward her longtime home, like a fine last meal served to a condemned prisoner.

    “I thought maybe by putting in something smart and happy, I could slow down the process,” she says.

    Sifting through a green folder containing articles she has collected about the subway over the years, Ms. Ardrey, 69, stops at a New York Times article from January, just three months before the groundbreaking, bearing the headline, “Rising Costs Put M.T.A. Projects at Risk of Delay.”

    “That gave you hope,” she says. “We all thought: ‘Isn’t that wonderful? Maybe they’ll run out of money.’ ”

    Ms. Ardrey has attended community board meetings and spoken to transit authority representatives who are present to answer questions. Keeping informed, she says, is important, but it comes with a price.

    “Psychologically, it’s not so great,” she says. “It’s as if you have to have a very serious life-threatening operation and you have to keep going and talking about it.”

    Aaron Lohr

    Third-floor studio

    As with many tenants, Aaron Lohr’s fondness for his current apartment leaves him skeptical that another will compare. His apartment looks out over East 72nd Street and the Telegraphe Cafe, where Mr. Lohr, a 31-year-old actor, stops in each morning for a cup of coffee.

    “For some of these older people who have been here forever,” he says, “I would imagine it’s a lot more difficult to just up and leave.”

    His own attitude, however, is casual, drawing confidence from his youth and proclaimed flexibility. “I really haven’t thought about it. I’ll just wait until I’m notified.”

    Since this is his third apartment in three years of living in the city, the thought of relocating doesn’t faze him. For Mr. Lohr, formerly of Los Angeles, and other more adaptable tenants of the building, the looming eviction hovers in the realm of inconvenience, not tragedy, though even inconvenience, he says, is less than desirable.

    “It would be nice to have a Second Avenue subway,” he says. “But when it affects you, your tune kind of changes.”

    Susan Wegemer

    Fourth-floor one-bedroom

    Susan Wegemer, a 44-year-old account executive at a medical company, who has lived in the building for eight years, expects that rising rents on the Upper East Side and a shrinking pool of rent-stabilized apartments will drive her from the neighborhood. This saddens her, because she claims to know all the doormen.

    “Day to day, I try not to think about it; I figure I’ll deal with it when I get an eviction letter,” Ms. Wegemer says. “It’s looming, and you just don’t know when it’s going to come down on you on all sides.”

    She notes that the transportation authority has promised to send relocation consultants to help residents locate comparable apartments. She draws quotation marks in the air around the word “comparable.”

    Certain aspects beyond square footage and monthly rent, she says, are unlikely to translate from this building to the next. Little quirks, once irritating, have in time become endearing. The apartment’s rooms, Ms. Wegemer says, are all wired on the same electrical circuit. “If you have to use the toaster,” she says, “you can only have one light on.”

    In preparation for her eventual eviction, she is about to tackle her spring cleaning. Standing on the gray shag rug in her living room, she squints thoughtfully at her possessions, measuring not only their utility and sentimental value but also their bulk. Reality is setting in: These things will have to be boxed and wrapped, lifted and carried, loaded into trucks and lugged upstairs.

    “I don’t want to move stuff that I don’t absolutely love. That filing cabinet,” she says, glaring at it across the room. “I hate that filing cabinet.”

    She voices a nervous concern for at least one of her neighbors. “The guy beneath me moved in about six months ago,” she says. “I don’t know if he got the memo.”

    Jenner Smith

    Third-floor one-bedroom

    The neighbor Ms. Wegemer refers to is Jenner Smith, a 23-year-old investment banker who arrived last August after graduating from Gettysburg College. He was unaware of the building’s likely fate when he moved in, but it does not bother him, since he considers the apartment more stopover than destination.

    “I’m not investing in this place,” he says, gesturing toward the bare white walls. “It’s pretty barebones.” He has no great attachment to the apartment or the neighborhood, and given the congestion on the Lexington Avenue line, he supports the building of the new subway. “I could move anywhere, and it wouldn’t really make a difference,” he says. “It was a great place to start out.”

    Maria Moraitis

    Fifth-floor one-bedroom

    The apartment in which Maria Moraitis has lived for 20 years once belonged to the sculptor Alexander Calder, she says. She hopes this distinction might persuade the city that the building is a cultural landmark that should be spared the wrecker’s ball.

    Beyond this hope, though, she has not given much thought to the possibility of eviction or what might come after.

    “I don’t have any plans, and I haven’t heard anything official,” says Ms. Moraitis, a 46-year-old librarian at New York University. What information she does get comes mostly from neighbors who attend meetings and relay information in the stairwells. She has been encouraged by rumors of delays. “They might consider sparing our building,” she says.

    Kate Armenta

    Second-floor one-bedroom

    “I’m totally not involved and non-privy to the whole thing,” Kate Armenta says. “I’m clueless.” Ms. Armenta, a 27-year-old editor at Vogue, has not attended community board meetings and describes herself as someone who doesn’t like to “raise a lot of ruckus.”

    As is the case with many of the younger tenants, Ms. Armenta’s short-term designs on her apartment, where she has lived for four years, are attended by a shrugging nonchalance. What she knows she has learned from neighbors who have attended meetings, but these secondhand accounts lack the authority and finality of official reports.

    Sarah and Andrew Smith

    Fourth-floor one-bedroom

    Sarah and Andrew Smith are among the few tenants who believe that they stand to gain from the intrusion of the Second Avenue subway. Far from viewing themselves as victims, they suspect that their decision to move into the building from Queens in 2003 was not so much a prologue to disaster as a stroke of luck.

    “We’re kind of happy about the lump sum we’re going to get when they kick us out,” Ms. Smith says.

    Mr. Smith, a 30-year-old chef, and Ms. Smith, 31, who works in health care public relations, may use the money to put a down payment on their next apartment, most likely in Brooklyn, though choice of borough is the extent of their post-subway planning. Meanwhile, they try to stay informed, which is not always easy.

    “It’s pretty much how bureaucracy functions,” Mrs. Smith says. “It’s noncommittal and moderately informative.”

    She admits she may have been lulled into a false sense of comfort, which will end with sudden impact and little warning. And in fact, beyond reading the newspapers and attending the occasional meeting, there’s not much she can do but wait. “It’s hard work to keep up with that kind of stuff,” she says. After a long day at work, thinking about her eventual eviction doesn’t rank high among ways she wants to pass her leisure hours.

    Margaret Cormier

    Third-floor one-bedroom

    “I would have that fixed,” says Margaret Cormier, gesturing toward the front door of her apartment, whose edges are discolored and marred by peeling paint. “But why bother?”

    Ms. Cormier, an 81-year-old former nurse at nearby Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, has lived in the building for 44 years. “This is a great neighborhood,” she says. “I’ve seen all the changes. When I first came here, it was Czech, German and Hungarian. I remember the Czech men playing cards on the corner.”

    The prospect of eviction leaves only a small dent in her cheerful demeanor, but she is afraid rising rents will leave her unable to afford a new apartment on her beloved Upper East Side. “If they don’t put me in this neighborhood,” she says, “I’ll have to leave the city.”

    Her disappointment is not for herself alone. Among her chief concerns is that a Second Avenue subway will forever alter the mood and flow of the neighborhood: she envisions clusters of cheap shops and restaurants springing up to lure the swarming subway riders. She points to the 72nd Street stop on the red line across town as an existing example. “It’s going to mess up the whole area,” she says. “And then when it’s done, it will be tacky.”

    Pam Berg

    Falk Surgical Supplies

    A tall man in jeans and a leather jacket strides into Falk Drug and Surgical Supplies, one of three businesses on the building’s ground floor, and calls out, “Pam!”

    Pam Berg, a member of the family that owns and operates the business, greets him with a familiar smile. The pharmacy, which caters to the needs of the ailing and the elderly, and which Ms. Berg’s father, Arnie, bought from the Falk family more than 30 years ago, is a place where matters of business are to be preceded by friendly chatter and inquiries into the health and happiness of husbands, wives and kids. And sometimes, less pleasant topics. “What do you think of the Second Avenue subway kicking us out, Pete?” Ms. Berg asks.

    Pete, who has dropped in to buy his ailing dog an oxygen mask, offers a response that is loud, negative and unprintable.

    The store works with local doctors, hospitals and physical therapists, and it serves customers who in many cases are unable to travel long distances. This makes the prospects of uprooting and relocating particularly worrisome. “What would we do?” she asks. “Our community is here; our customers are here.”

    This day the store is bustling with elderly customers. One woman asks for Ms. Berg’s advice on wrist bandages while another returns a wheelchair. In one aisle, a woman is trying out a cane much too long for her. With each careful step, her right shoulder juts upward. Another Berg family employee gently tells the woman to stop walking, and fishes through a barrel of canes to find one that is a better fit.

    Copyright 2007 The New York Times Company

  6. #336

    Default 2nd Avenue Subway - Removal of Trees

    Friday, June 08, 2007

    Adrian Benepe
    City of New York
    Parks and Recreation

    Dear Commissioner Benepe:

    The New York Bird Club sent out an invitation to a meeting at NY Blood Center, 310 E. 67th St , Thursday, June 7, to protest tree removal by the Department of Parks in order to allegedly facilitate construction of the 2nd Ave Subway. The Bird Club complained:
    "Due to the construction of the 2nd Ave subway, there already have been removed at least 40 trees along 2nd Ave. The next place to remove trees is by the park at 2nd Ave between 91-90th Streets. There are magnificent very large and lush sycamore and other trees on this block, perhaps that have been there for 100 years or so. They are marked to be removed sometime in the very near future. These trees are homes to squirrels and birds who already do not have enough greenery to survive, and the trees also provide beauty, shade and clean-air for people.

    "Please tell everyone to come and support these trees who are alive and do not wish to be chopped down."

    There was a representative from the Parks Department at the meeting answering questions. I asked him if in view of the fact that the 2nd Ave Subway is far from fully funded, could not tree removal be halted until funding for construction is assured. Before he could reply, in fact before I was finished, a lady whose name I do not know intervened to say my question was irrelevant and that the 2nd Ave Subway was fully funded.

    I understand that the lady was connected with Community Board 8. This is a body that does not hold me in the highest regard because beginning in the 70s, as a columnist for a local newspaper Our Town and political candidate I have often been less then complementary of the Community Boards. I wrote, for example, that their budgets increased 3000% during the fiscal crisis of the 70s and 80s. I am also known as an advocate of light rail in preference to subways, which is a no-no at Community Board 8 and also the Republican and Democratic political clubs on the Eastside.

    I did not bring evidence to the meeting to back up my contention about the lack of funding, and the gentleman from the Parks Department did not intervene in the back-and-forth sharp exchange between me and not only the lady who had initiated the dispute but also what appeared to be two or three others from the Community Board. Therefore, I am submitting my evidence to you now. It is a direct quote from PlaNYC:
    "We may have broken the ground for the Second Avenue Subway-but there is still a significant funding gap for the first of four phases. While the entire project is designed to travel from Harlem to Lower Manhattan, we are still nearly a billion dollars short of the funds needed to build just from 96th Street to 63rd Street.
    I would like to add that there is a growing wariness among legislators and civic activists in the outer boroughs regarding the 2nd Ave Subway. They have begun to realize that Eastside Republicans and Democrats are seeking to corral virtually all available transportation funding from city, state and federal sources. In light of the fact that Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx, Staten Island elected officials and their constituents have serious transportation needs of their own and face severe protests from outer borough commuters who may wonder why they must pay subway and bus fares up to $3 per ride to help fund a project that will not provide relief for the crowded Lexington Avenue until 2014. Under these circumstances, it is questionable that sufficient non-Manhattan representatives will vote in Congress, the State Legislature and City Council to provide necessary funding for the 2nd Ave Subway.

    I am aware that there is considerable discomfort on the Lexington Avenue subway. In the mayoral election of 2001 (where I was a candidate), I heard City Council Speaker Peter Vallone, who was also running, propose as a solution constructing Metro-North stations on the Eastside. Peter Vallone's idea was meritorious. To avoid residential dislocation, Metro North stations could be placed in the center of Park Avenue at 96, 86, 77th and 59th St , similar to those on the Westside on Broadway at 116th St and 72nd St . This would, however, draw considerable protest from The Lexington Democratic Club and the Metropolitan Republicans Club as many of their contributors live on Park Avenue and might be reluctant to experience even minimal inconvenience.

    However, opening up 10 Metro-North stations in the Bronx to Metro Card users (a 50% fare saving) and scheduling train stops at Bronx stations every four or five minutes instead of the current 18 minutes would divert a substantial amount of commuters with consequent considerable relaxation of pressure on the overcrowded Lexington Avenue line. Street level boarding, nonpolluting state of art Light rail on 2nd Ave would also be welcomed by Eastside riders and residents because it would involve, unlike the 2nd Ave Subway, negligible destruction of affordable housing or loss of jobs in restaurants and stores along 2nd Ave. (See appended New York Sun blog).

    I believe the case is overwhelming for the Department of Parks to cease destroying trees along 2nd Ave at least until there is assurance that the 2nd Ave Subway is fully funded. Even then I hope the Department will find ways to prevent or at least minimize further loss of valuable trees, which are not only a refuge for birds and squirrels but also help improve the environment. Even the MTA grudgingly admits 2nd Ave Subway construction poses a threat to regional air quality (see below).

    Respectfully yours,
    George N. Spitz

    PlaNYC Should Not Prefer 6 miles of Subway to 60 miles of Light Rail Without Further StudyReader comment on: The Planner Behind Bloomberg's PlaNYC

    Submitted by George N. Spitz, May 29, 2007 05:10
    Rohit Aggarwala, the technocrat who crafted Mayor Bloomberg's PlaNYC, allegedly "shares a passion for high-speed trains." But there is apparently no place in PlaNYC for state of art street level boarding nonpolluting "high speed" light rail, the generally accepted 21st-century solution for municipal transportation problems. Instead, New York City is spending virtually all available transit funding on the 2nd Ave Subway. Even the MTA grudgingly admits that
    "Because of the large scale and extended duration of the construction required for the Second Avenue Subway, the construction could potentially increase regional concentrations of ozone precursors-NOx and VOCs-as well as fine particulate matter (PM2.5), all of which are pollutants of concern on a regional basis."

    Furthermore, for 6 miles of 2nd Ave Subway building costs, 60 miles light rail could be constructed, consequently, solving not only Manhattan commuting needs but also those of Staten Island, Eastern Queens, Central and South Brooklyn and Northeast Bronx, all areas greatly needing improved transportation. Mr.Aggarwala should be aware that Barcelona, Toronto, Munich, Lisbon, Vancouver plus Salt Lake City , Portland and Denver in the United States, are choosing light rail in preference to subways and buses. He should persuade Mayor Bloomberg and Deputy Mayor Daniel Doctoroff to withdraw environmental permits for the 2nd Avenue Subway until a fair and open study can be initiated perhaps in collaboration with Queens Councilman John Liu, Chairman of the City Council Transportation Committee on whether New York City should spend virtually all available transit funds on a subway project utilizing pre-1950 technology that will serve only one portion of Manhattan rather than on a modern light rail system that will benefit all New Yorkers.


  7. #337



    People in this city are messed up in the head I swear...

  8. #338

    Arrow To Eugenious:

    luciedove is a new member and may not be used to taking a thrashing on message boards. Go easier on him -- at first, anyway.

  9. #339
    Forum Veteran macreator's Avatar
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    East Midtown


    This Spitz man does have a point about funding. I'll believe the Second Avenue subway will be built when the cars are on the tracks.

  10. #340
    Senior Member
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    Yonkers/ Hell's Kitchen


    Quote Originally Posted by Eugenious View Post

    People in this city are messed up in the head I swear...
    Lol we have similar mindstates

  11. #341


    Quote Originally Posted by Eugenious View Post
    Goddamn nimby's...
    You're pre-judging. He may be one, he may not be:

    If he doesn't want the 100-year-old tree cut down because they are in his backyard, but he doesn't mind if others further away from him are cut down, then he's a nimby.

    But if he doesn't want any more of them cut down, no matter how far they are from his dwelling, then he's not a nimby. He's just a man who loves trees. (And the wildlife around them.)

    Here you have a point. Except that they won't be replanting the large, gracious 100-year-old trees; they'll be planting fledglings.

  12. #342


    The letter from George Spitz to the Parks Commissioner contains a door-opener (for anyone else reading it) - the removal of trees on 2nd Ave at 90th and 91st. The main topic of the letter, however, seems to be a challenge of the SAS vis-a-vis light rail.

    I'm not going there.

    As for the tree removal, it's reasonable that they should be removed at a time that is as close to actual construction as practicable. It should be something that can be worked out among the MTA, Parks Dept, and CB.

    90th-91st is within the Phase One zone, but there is no specific information on that segment:

    MTA webpage
    Construction Contract One will include the construction of the tunnels between 92nd and 63rd Streets, for the construction of the launch box for the tunnel boring machine (TBM) at 92nd to 95th Streets, and construction of access shafts at 69th and 72nd Streets. It is expected that the first surface work for Contract One will take place in the first quarter of 2007 in the vicinity of the launch box, 91st to 95th Street. Contract One is expected to be 40 months in duration.
    The NY Bird Club forum provides no information as to whether these trees need to be removed at all, just rather impassioned posts that they should not be, citing environmental and property value benefits. That's true, but it must be weighed against the environmental and property value benefits of the SAS.

    Tree removal is painful, since it takes so long before they are replaced. The Holland Tunnel rotary was finally re-landscaped, and the DEP came along and removed a block of decades-old trees to construct a riser for the water tunnel.

    Whataya gonna do?

  13. #343


    ok I get the point, the trees are a big part of the landscape. But when the property owners cut down hundreds of trees all over the city there is no outcry. So I say to the tree hugger, how about you talk about the whole city and support the laws for punishment of people who remove tree's for no reason. How about you support the neighborhoods that are not as fortunate as your's to have kept the trees untouched for so long, how about you look at some portions of the city with ZERO trees that don't have any reason not to have them besides city oversight.

    If you're really a bird/tree hugger/lover you need to look whats going on in the city as a whole not just your block.

  14. #344
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    Except that they won't be replanting the large, gracious 100-year-old trees; they'll be planting fledglings.
    How long will 100-year-old trees survive on their own? And a completed subway will bring a lot more environmental and financial benefits than a few trees.

  15. #345
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    New York City


    Second Avenue Subway Plan Retooled for Grocer's Sake
    By Staff Reporter of the Sun
    July 6, 2007

    On the Upper East Side, where basic supermarkets are scarce, two Food Emporiums that had been slated to shutter to accommodate station entrances and escalators on the Second Avenue subway line are off the chopping block.

    Because of the high cost of acquiring the grocer's retail space, as well as vocal community opposition to the plans, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority has unveiled a redesigned station entrance so that it does not have to acquire any space along Second Avenue between 85th and 86th Streets that has been occupied by Food Emporium for almost a decade.

    "It was the source of tremendous relief for our neighborhood," the chairman of Community Board 8, David Liston, said. "There's no shortage here of high-end stores, but in terms of your basic supermarket with relatively affordable prices, we have very few."

    The redesigned station entrance , unveiled to a crowd of relieved Upper East Side residents a few weeks ago, would stand in front of the store instead of replacing it.

    The new station entrance includes two glass-paneled doors that would open onto a widened sidewalk in front of the store to accommodate foot traffic, officials said.

    Another Food Emporium at 63rd Street and Third Avenue, which was to be converted into an escalator and ventilation facility for the subway line, has also been repositioned, a move that saves the supermarket as well as significant dollars for the MTA, a spokesman, Jeremy Soffin, said.

    The real estate costs for the first segment of the subway line, which would stretch to 96th Street from 63rd Street and is slated for completion in 2013, have been reported to cost $245 million. Mr. Soffin said any redesign costs for the station entrance were negligible, and that there were significant savings associated with allowing the supermarkets to keep their retail space and avoid the process of procuring easements to kick them out.

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