Subway service restored, traffic moving again after Times Square water main break

Wednesday, August 30, 2023
Subway service restored after Times Square water main break
Derick Waller reports on subway service and road closures following a water main break in Times Square.

TIMES SQUARE, Manhattan (WABC) -- There are some lane closures on 7th Avenue Wednesday, but subway service is fully restored after the water main break in Times Square.

Work continues at 40th Street and 7th Avenue, but overnight the city did open a lane of traffic.

Crews are working to cut and cap the affected pipes, all while restoring water to a few buildings nearby.

Thankfully, most of the large buildings have redundant water supplies.

The mess was caused when a 127-year-old pipe burst showering the Times Square 1, 2, 3 station in water, flooding the tracks, and paralyzing train service on the line during Tuesday morning's commute.

MTA crews had it cleaned up by noon, but could it happen again. New York City Transit President Richard Davies says it's possible.

"This is 120-year-old system. There's a lot of investment that needs to happen that even the public doesn't see. There's a lot that we need to do, but I have every confidence in this group of people and those who aren't here to get it done," Davies said.

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection says that water main breaks are less common in New York than in other cities. Still, experts say these aging pipes need to be replaced at a faster rate.

"It's tired," said Nello Rivieccio, who is in charge of the construction crew. "We get old, and we get tired, and it's got to be replaced."

Approximately 1.8 million gallons of water flooded the system.

"You need tires every 50 thousand miles don't you?" said Rivieccio. "This lasted a hundred years, so I think it did its job."

ALSO READ | Questions over NYC's aging infrastructure reveal troubling answers following water main break

The water main break that broke in Midtown Tuesday was originally built in 1896. Dan Krauth has more on the investigation into repairing New York City's aging infrastructure.


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