"It wasn't wrecked. It was destroyed, top to bottom," MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota said.
It is a critical station in the system, one of the oldest and a lifeline for Staten Island Ferry commuters who must use other stations.
But getting this and many other damaged elements of the transportation infrastructure back to where it was the day before Sandy, which is the MTA's goal, comes with a nearly five-billion dollar price tag.
MTA and state officials are turning to FEMA and the federal government for the critical recovery funds.
"The flooding of the underground infrastructure is a major liability. It disables the region," New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said.
When commuters see even a portion of the water that filled and damaged this station they can only wonder when it might reopen. MTA officials stress it will take longer than most people think.
"It's going to take weeks to do an assessment, a detailed assessment, and months to do the restoration," NYC Transit President Tom Prendergast said.
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