2nd Ave subway expansion could soon connect East Harlem

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Tuesday, November 23, 2021
2nd Ave subway expansion could soon connect East Harlem
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Dan Krauth has more on expansion efforts for the 2nd Avenue subway.

UPPER EAST SIDE, Manhattan (WABC) -- If you're traveling on the city's Upper East Side, taking a car or bus has been one of the only options for people heading north and south. That could soon change.

On Tuesday, Gov. Kathy Hochul announced plans to continue the long overdue expansion of the 2nd Avenue subway connecting 96th to 125th streets and creating three new stations along the way.

"The dream has always been there but the money never matched the dreams, that era is now over," Hochul said.

Eyewitness News cameras went down below the street, a few stories down to see the tunnel construction crews had dug out in the 1970s. They even set some subway rail which is now rusty. It never saw a train or passenger.

City and state leaders are hoping to change that with the passage of the federal infrastructure bill. The city applied for grant money for the $6 billion project.

"We are hoping to hear very soon," said Gov. Hochul.

If approved, they hope to start construction in the new year under the streets of East Harlem, an area where public transportation is needed than almost anywhere else in the city. Seventy percent of residents in the area use public transit to get to work.

"This is a community that has been waiting too long," said Janno Lieber, MTA Acting Chair and CEO.

The new Q line extension will connect to Lexington Avenue and Metro North, allowing many people in the area to travel more freely to more places.

"It will serve, when it opens, as many people as the entire Philadelphia subway system, that's the kind of project this is," said Lieber.

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