Sunday, January 8, 2017

What's next after Phase I of the Second Ave subway

On a side note - the NY Post has a good article of the restaurants along Second Ave, check them out.

With the first Phase of the Second Ave Subway open  the attention is now drawn to Phase 2 of the four phase Second Ave Subway Line, which is now from 96th Street to 125th Street and Lexington/Park Aves, along Second Ave then turning west onto 125th Street where it will bridge (or tunnel I should say) the gap between the 125th Street Lexington Ave stop with the Metro-North Harlem-125th Street stop.  The good news is that over half of line's tunnels are complete from the 1970's construction.  The bad news is that only a little over $1 billion of the $6 billion is needed to complete Phase 2 and construction won't be complete until 2027 at the earliest and the section at 116th Street has to be reconstructed to add a station there.   Then you have Phase 3 and 4 to deal with as the cost will escalate as the years progress,  

But let's look at the "what if" scenario after all 4 phases are complete?   Why not build across 125th Street, linking the 2 and 3 lines at Lenox Ave and the A/B/C/D lines at St. Nicholas Ave?  But first the MTA should make Phases 2 through 4 of the Second Ave Subway a top priority because the key is providing an alternative service to lower Manhattan,   I also think that under phase 4, another station should be built, South Ferry to properly connect with the 1 and R subway lines as well as the State Island Ferry, giving riders from Brooklyn and Staten Island another viable transit option.   Presently, there is no free transfer proposed on the Second Ave line south of Grand Street.   The MTA should press on the Feds and NY State for as much funding as possible to get these projects going for the next 10 years.  

I have some more suggestions - - of course nothing will happen for the next 30 years but you never know:

1.  Extend the line into the Bronx with stops under Third Ave at East 138th Street to connect with the Pelham 6 and < 6>  subway lines, 149th Street to serve the busy Hub shopping area and the 2/5 lines.  Then the line would stay on Melrose Ave instead of 3rd and turn west onto 161st Street with a stop at Morris Ave before merging with the Concourse B and D lines along the Grand Concourse.  The western section of the Bronx has the 4 line as the only East side option and that is so crowded now.  Having a line from the nearby IND Concourse segment travel on the East side may take some burden off the 4 line.  And then extend the D and the second line across East Gun Hill and Bartow Ave to Bay Plaza in Co-Op City.

2.  Branch off at East Houston Street and connect with the G line in Brooklyn.  That sounds outrageous but the G line is the orphan of the NYC subway system, the only full length subway line which never touches Manhattan.  But this would be nothing new for a subway line from East Houston St. in Manhattan because in 1929, NYC Independent Subway System (collectively known as the IND) proposed a South 4th Street subway line as well as the Second Ave subway which would connect with the G line at the Broadway-Union Ave station in Brooklyn station then continuing through Bushwick and down as the Utica Ave line.  In fact, there is a subway shell atop the lowest point of the Utica Ave A/C lines as well as an unfinished mezzanine area.  You can see the station shell by looking at the top of the platform walls on the C local tracks.

3.  And something not related to the Second Ave subway - - the 7 line.  There has been a lot of talk from officials in NY and NJ about the 7 line should go out to New Jersey - - well I say NO - -  bring he 7 line downtown.  The 7 line's Hudson Yard terminus is facing south, send it down 11th Ave and West Street then turn onto Battery Place where it would connect with the 4/5 at Bowling Green and the R/W at Whitehall Streets.  That would entail ripping up the Joe DiMaggio Highway for the next 20 years, that I feel was a mistake to build this so-called "highway" at street level instead of replacing it with a new elevated highway which would be a better version of the Miller Highway.  

Of course these are my thoughts.  Anyway, here's to a great 2017 ahead for all of you.

1 comment:

  1. Going all the way across 125 is something I would do as part of an extended Phase 2. As Columbia's expansion should be complete by then, I suspect such a crosstown will be needed. This also can provide a connection to the 8th Avenue Line (possibly in both directions north-south) at 125/St. Nicholas that can be a connection to the Concourse line as well.