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Thread: Second Avenue Subway Project

  1. #466
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    ^

    The lot/building footprint doesn't likely equal the exact amount of ventilation they need, there must be overlap. In order to even be talking about apartments above, you need to have access. So if there's access to apartments above it must be street level, thus potentially an opportunity for retail at coveted retail corners. I'm no engineer but if they really wanted to do it they probably could.

  2. #467
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    Plumbing an Obstacle to 2nd Ave. Subway

    By MICHAEL M. GRYNBAUM

    The elusive Second Avenue subway line has been held up for decades by political turf wars and ill-timed recessions. Now frustrated New Yorkers can add another culprit to the list: plumbing.

    The relocation of underground utilities, including water pipes, gas lines, fuel tanks and electrical wires, are to blame for at least six months of delays and more than $130 million in overruns on the perennially postponed project, according to the inspector general of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

    The utilities, within privately owned buildings or beneath Second Avenue itself, must be moved to make room for the first phase of the subway line, a 1.7-mile route between 96th Street and an existing station at Lexington Avenue and 63rd Street.

    The inspector general, Barry L. Kluger, who admitted “frustration” over the project’s progress, also found that the transportation authority’s troubles in awarding contracts have added $120 million to the bill and extended its completion date by a full year.

    Mr. Kluger’s findings offer a rare glimpse at the item-by-item causes for the enormous financial woes plaguing the project. Federal officials now believe the first phase of the subway line will cost about $4.98 billion, nearly $1 billion more than the original estimate in 2007, when federal financing was secured for the project.

    Federal officials now estimate the first phase of work will be completed in February 2018, while transportation authority officials have put the date at no later than July 2017.

    The transportation authority has acknowledged the project is over budget, but its planners say the ultimate cost for this phase will be around $4.45 billion.

    Mr. Kluger disclosed his conclusions in a letter sent last month to the Manhattan borough president, Scott M. Stringer, who asked the inspector general to examine some of the reasons behind the project’s delays. A copy of the letter was obtained by The New York Times.

    “What due diligence didn’t happen that we are having these cost overruns?” Mr. Stringer said in an interview. “There is a sophistication needed for managing a capital program of this magnitude that is lacking.”

    Mr. Stringer said he thought a joint city-state independent agency should be set up to coordinate work on the project, similar to a group created in 2004 that oversees construction in Lower Manhattan. “The M.T.A. must take a more realistic approach to managing expectations,” he said.

    A transportation authority spokesman wrote in an e-mail that the agency had adopted a “new approach to maximize cost effectiveness for all of our capital projects.”

    Some federal officials appear to be losing their patience with the transportation authority. In June, Peter M. Rogoff, the administrator of the Federal Transit Administration, pledged not to spend “a single penny” of federal funds to cover delays and cost overruns on the Second Avenue subway or a new Long Island Rail Road station beneath Grand Central Terminal.

    The inspector general is in the midst of a broader review of the authority’s construction practices. Mr. Kluger wrote that he expected to complete that report by the end of this year.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/09/ny...er=rss&emc=rss

  3. #468

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    Any bets on this thing rolling before 2020?

  4. #469
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    I'll take side bets on which gets delayed more - 2nd avenue or east side access

  5. #470

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    ^
    I'll guess SAS.

    ESA is deeper, further away from people yelling and screaming.

  6. #471
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    2nd Ave. Subway is on the sloooow track

    By MICHAEL BLAUSTEIN and MICHELLE KASKE

    It's the pain train.

    The Second Avenue Subway may have avoided significant construction mishaps this year, but the troubled project is still far behind schedule and hundreds of millions of dollars over budget, lawmakers warned yesterday.

    Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-Manhattan) said the Federal Transit Administration estimates that the first phase of the "T" train running between East 96th and 63rd streets will cost $420 million more than the MTA's $4.5 billion price tag, and wrap up two years later than the agency's 2016 target date.

    It was just the latest frustrating news for straphangers, who spent yesterday suffering through one of the MTA's biggest disruptions of weekend service ever.

    Trains were disrupted on 18 of the 19 lines that run on weekends, with the MTA deploying 600 shuttle buses across the city.

    Transit workers were dispatched to assist confused riders, but they offered little relief.

    "They're just chilling in the shade while we're all confused standing in the sun," said Mary Webster, 34, a Brooklyn nurse, while waiting for a shuttle bus at the Court Square subway stop.

    The pain will continue next weekend, when 14 lines will be disrupted, according to current estimates.

    http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/m...#ixzz10hVmnChp

  7. #472
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    Subway Work on 2nd Avenue Hobbles Stores

    By JOSEPH BERGER



    The noise, dust, barricades and occasional explosions associated with construction of the long-awaited Second Avenue subway are driving away customers from businesses along the avenue and plunging many shops and restaurants into deep financial trouble, two dozen merchants said.

    In July, the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce counted 29 shuttered storefronts between 63rd and 96th Streets — a once-bustling stretch where the subway’s first three stations and the connecting tunnel are being dug. Since then, at least two other businesses have closed. And while the anemic economy has surely taken its toll, many merchants say business has declined 25 percent to 50 percent over the last three years because of the hurdles posed by construction.

    “Second Avenue has become a place that shoppers avoid,” said Jeffrey Bernstein, the chamber’s chairman. “People don’t want to come. It’s difficult to maneuver.”

    The disruption is far worse than many of the merchants had expected when work finally resumed on the subway tunnel on the East Side of Manhattan in 2007, after decades of stop-and-start planning and construction.

    The resulting damage to the local economy is also far worse than they had expected, store owners said. In particular, restaurants and local service stores that depend on sidewalk traffic, like dry cleaners and pet stores, have been hit hard.

    “New Yorkers don’t go out of their way more than a block and a half for service, so if you make it impossible, they retreat to another location,” said Faith Hope Consolo, chairwoman of retail leasing and sales at Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate.

    Even landmark businesses like the 74-year-old Heidelberg Restaurant and Dorrian’s Red Hand, a 50-year-old bar, are suffering because construction has gobbled up entire blocks of parking.

    Chris Cunningham, a manager of Schaller & Weber, the 73-year-old purveyor of bratwurst and other German specialties, said business was down 30 percent because customers who left Yorkville for the suburbs and who drove in could not double-park to pick up their bags.

    The construction has taken away at least one traffic lane along several long stretches where stations are planned, and chewed off five to seven feet of sidewalk in some spots. The work will not be finished until 2017, and many merchants said they doubted they could hold out.

    Many say they were misled at meetings about the damage construction would wreak.

    “I think they painted a picture at these meetings, and then they delivered something else,” said Joe Pecora, an owner of Delizia 92 pizzeria and restaurant at 92nd Street, who formed the Second Avenue Business Association two years ago because of the construction’s impact.

    Officials say they have honored commitments they made to minimize disruption and mitigate noise and dust. Lois Tendler, a vice president for government and community relations at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, said the agency had met regularly with merchants and had signs on its Web site and at Lexington Avenue subway stations urging people to “Shop Second Avenue.”

    Shopkeepers say they need financial help and compensation. But an effort to provide tax relief and grants was vetoed last year by Gov. David A. Paterson.

    “We have been incredibly responsive to every feasible request,” Ms. Tendler said. “Where we part company with shop owners is that we do not have the ability to pay them for the lost income. We use public money, and we do not know of any government entity that pays for lost business.”

    A Second Avenue subway from 125th Street to the Wall Street area to relieve crowding on the Lexington Avenue line has been on the city’s agenda since the 1930s. A tunnel section in Harlem was dug in the 1970s, but halted during that era’s fiscal crisis.

    The current construction phase stretches from 100th Street to 63rd Street and Lexington, where a station connects with the existing Q line. New stations are being built at 96th, 86th and 72nd Streets. The transportation authority has postponed the completion date to 2017 from 2013, and increased cost estimates to almost $5 billion, from $3.8 billion.

    A few stores — including a hardware store and restaurant, whose sites will be used for subway entrances or ventilation — were closed by eminent domain and the owners compensated. Since then, Mr. Pecora said, he has seen a pharmacy, liquor shop, two dry cleaners, three delis and a tool store cease business.

    Two restaurants, CiaoBella at 85th Street, which closed on Wednesday, and Cinema Cafe at 70th Street, which closed at the end of July, say they shut down after losing a large chunk of sidewalk to construction barriers, which prevented them from putting up outdoor tables, a major source of earnings. Their losses were not reimbursed. Dust, noise and ugly views also deterred customers.

    Khalid Ziouti, an owner of O.K. Falafel House, a 15-year-old nook at 92nd Street, said much of his trade consisted of drivers of taxis and ambulances who parked or double-parked in front, ran in and picked up a pita meal. With head-high construction barriers sealing off the traffic lane, those drivers go elsewhere, and business is down 35 percent, he said.

    Peter Ahn, the owner of Ivory Cleaner near 85th Street, said earnings were down 10 percent because customers told him they were dropping clothes off on more pleasant commercial avenues. Orest Lapan, manager of the Pet Market in the 72nd Street area, said business was off 45 percent and the store was considering closing.

    “A lot of people think we’re already closed because they can’t see us behind the barriers,” Mr. Lapan said.

    Ms. Tendler of the transportation authority said that with the weak economy, stores had been doubly hit. But merchants say that the economy slackened before construction began on their blocks, and that the harm from construction was far worse. Mr. Lapan, the manager of Pet Market, said five other Pet Market locations in the city were thriving.

    Merchants assert that they often get a runaround when they complain to the city.

    Officials of the Bloomberg administration say an outreach team from Small Business Services has taken steps to make sure stores are accessible, extend utility payment plans and check that signs advise passers-by where obscured businesses are located.

    But Giorgio Manzio, manager of the three-year-old CiaoBella, which had 25 employees, said that in the months before it closed, the restaurant was ticketed for having tables on too narrow a sidewalk — a sidewalk narrowed by construction.

    Abigail Lootens, a spokeswoman for the Department of Consumer Affairs, said permits had to be revoked for 13 outdoor cafes along the construction zone, with refunds given.

    One businesswoman had to call in family for help. Young Yoo, a Korean-born widow who opened Buddha BBeeQ, a narrow Asian grill near 92nd Street, a few months before ground was broken for the subway in front of her store, has exhausted her savings and is three months behind in rent, her son, Peter, 38, said.

    A year ago, she brought in Peter, who quit his job as an editor in Binghamton, N.Y., and her daughter to work without pay. He said the family was trying to keep the business alive until April, when Mrs. Yoo, 64, can qualify for Social Security.

    “Instead of being a prosperous restaurateur, she’ll end up being a penniless person waiting for a check,” Mr. Yoo said. “That’s what Second Avenue did to her. It created a pauper.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/05/ny...1&ref=nyregion

  8. #473
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    A great graphic from that article. I live right near the Cinema Cafe and have got to say that there are plenty of other restaurants that do fine with the same headaches. The sign on their door after they closed claimed that the sidewalk seats they used to have were eliminated due to the narrower sidewalk and thus killed their business. However the staging area is not directly in front of their doors and Ko Sushi across the street does good business with the same situation. If you had many closings in the same area I would say the SAS was the culprit, like in the 90's.

  9. #474

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    I lived in this area for many years and rode the overcrowded Lex. Ave. line to Wall Street daily. Every day, as I walked the huge distance from York to Lex and then entered the overcrowded car, I thought that a new line was essential. If a few crappy businesses die, it's a minor price to pay for an essential addition to the city's transit system. The few times I went to the Cinema Cafe, I found it to be mierda.

  10. #475

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    Quote Originally Posted by londonlawyer View Post
    I lived in this area for many years and rode the overcrowded Lex. Ave. line to Wall Street daily. Every day, as I walked the huge distance from York to Lex and then entered the overcrowded car, I thought that a new line was essential. If a few crappy businesses die, it's a minor price to pay for an essential addition to the city's transit system. The few times I went to the Cinema Cafe, I found it to be mierda.
    Ruthless! Although such is the cycle of history. Remember the radio guys before the WTC? Have you tried Gracie's Cafe? I had a roast chicken salad best I ever tried, although I didn't ask for it, & the service that day was slow, but I'd definitely go back because the food is good.

  11. #476
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    MTA Tries Those Second Avenue Ventilation Shafts Again

    October 21, 2010, by Sara Polsky



    In the long history of the Second Avenue subway, Upper East Siders have done a solid job setting aside their hunger for better transportation to focus on the key issues. Namely, the ugliness of the ventilation shafts that are a big part of the subway's first phase. Those structures morphed from the original row house concept to something more utilitarian and more neighbor-enraging. The new design led to a string of complaints, a lawsuit, and even a request to turn the ventilation buildings into condos, so UESers can live in them instead of looking at them. The MTA isn't going for that, but did show up to a progress meeting earlier this month with a new set of renderings. See the differences? Second Avenue Sagas points out one: trees!



    The MTA's three fresh drawings are meant to suggest other materials that might blend better with the neighborhood. Second Avenue Sagas' insta-review: "The first one — my favorite choice — incorporates the same brick as its neighbor on 72nd St. The tan one in the middle tries, but fails, to replicate the building next to it. The bottom grey one is too utilitarian for the Upper East Side. It’s not a realistic alternative as much as a warning of what could be." Other thoughts?

    Along Second Ave., building a better ancillary structure [Second Avenue Sagas]
    Second Avenue Subway coverage [Curbed]

    http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2010/1...again.php#more

  12. #477
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    Three versions of a design that don't work. Why all that same colored brick in a huge expanse along one side? Even hiding some of it behind the added trees doesn't do any good. FAIL.

  13. #478

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    They're all so pretty, I just can't choose.

  14. #479
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    LOL Zippy!

  15. #480
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    It is a big box.

    All they needed to do was look for how many of todays chain restaurants (namely Cheesecake factory et all) fake their way through Faux architectural embellishments.

    All they need is a bit of depth and a bit of color change (as Loft mentioned). But no, they want to make the box as cheap as possibel because we all know how expensive it is to do a simple thing like ask an architect to design something with a LITTLE style....

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