Discussion relating to the past and present operations of the NYC Subway, PATH, and Staten Island Railway (SIRT).

Moderator: GirlOnTheTrain

  by Paul1705
There was no 116th Street station in the 1968-75 plan. There was to be a station around 120th Street (maybe 118th-120th) next to Taino Towers and then it was up to the Bronx. That borough was to have about three stations: Mott Haven (and a possible redevelopment of the old yards), Hunts Point Avenue, and East 180th Street. There was speculation about converting some parts of the IRT (the outer segments of the 2, 5, or 6 trains) to B division standards.

I'm not sure if the present 125th and Lexington concept is better, although it does allow transfers to Bronx lines. There will be a bellmouth in place (at about 125th and Second Avenue) for some far future extension to the Bronx.
  by railfan365
I see that I'm not the only one who's critical of how much longer it takes NYC to build less subway compared to other cities, or even NYC prior to 1968. Maybe consistent with how they picked up the pace in mid-2016 to complete Phase I without blowing another target date, they'll be able to step back in time and build the other Phases in less time than they took for the first one.
  by Arlington
railfan365 wrote:I see that I'm not the only one who's critical of how much longer it takes NYC to build less subway compared to other cities, or even NYC prior to 1968. Maybe consistent with how they picked up the pace in mid-2016 to complete Phase I without blowing another target date, they'll be able to step back in time and build the other Phases in less time than they took for the first one.
Alon Levy, Yonah Freemark Greater Greater Washington and others (including Elon Musk) have all focused on the USA's problem with tunnel costs. Its crazy. Other cities in the world are old, dense, & sensitive (e.g London, Paris, Tokyo, & Milan) and still lines there cost in the $300m to $1b per kilometer instead of the $1.5b (7ave ext) or nearly $2b for SAS Phase 1. Clilck for a picture from GGW's article.

We're not talking a bit of red tape, gold plating, lagging tech, or featherbedding of what we're paying in the USA. IT MUST BE THAT WE SUFFER FROM ALL FOUR (which also ensures that none gets "too blamed")
  by Defiant
The construction costs in the US are just pathetic and unreasonable. Here is a very good example in Hamburg, German city that I've visited a number of time.

Here are the facts about their new U4 line to HafenCity:

http://www.hafencity.com/en/overview/ch ... ct-p6.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

"24 August 2007
The ground-breaking ceremony for the new U4 underground rapid transit line takes place. The four-kilometer line will carry around 35,000 passengers a day. It connects HafenCity with Jungfernstieg and the Central Station. Two underground stations will be built in HafenCity: Überseequartier and HafenCity University. The U4 should start operating in the spring of 2012. The U4 will eventually run from HafenCity via the Central Station to Billstedt. The developer is Hamburger Hochbahn. The cost is EUR 323.6m (status in 2009); to ensure the project's economic viability, a federal government subsidy of EUR 128.2m under the Local Authority Finance Transport Act (GVFG) is guaranteed. "

This line is comparable in length with Second avenue subway. Hamburg of course is not as densely populated as NYC but still it is an old city with lots of underground utility lines. And surprise, surprise, the line seems to be completed in 2012 as projected:
http://www.hafencity.com/en/concepts/ne ... ne-u4.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

And final budget seems to be at around €324m split between federal government and Hamburg city:
http://www.metro-report.com/news/single ... ncity.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
This is a time fraction of what was spent on SAS Phase I!!!

And this is Germany, a country that has unions, rigid working day duration, fairly high salaries, etc. I wonder how US manages to be the worst in the world in building anything. Anything build here seems to be way behind schedule and outrageously expensive. East Side access project is of course another example...
  by trainbrain
Both ends of the full length SAS have provisions for further extensions.

The Wikipedia article says that the Hanover Square station will be deep enough to allow for a new tunnel to be built into Brooklyn. Wouldn't it be cheaper to connect it to the existing Montague Street Tunnel instead? It has extra capacity because only the R uses it currently. Then the T service could be extended into Brooklyn via that tunnel to Bay Ridge 95th Street running local in Brooklyn. This would double local service on 4th Ave, provide a connection to the East Side for the B, D, N, and Q lines, and eliminate the need to run shuttle trains on the R during late nights as long as the N continued to go via Whitehall Street during that time.

On the North End, I believe there will be a possibility to extend the line into the Bronx, or crosstown on 125th Street. I've thought that the best extension to the Bronx would be to have it go up 3rd Ave, under Crotona Park to Tremont Ave, then diagonally to Southern Boulevard, under the Bronx Zoo to East 180th Street, and replacing the 5 on Dyre Ave. Possible station locations could be 138th Street with a transfer to the 6, 149th Street with a transfer to the 2 and 5, 161st Street, 168th Street, Tremont Ave, Southern Boulevard (near south end of the Bronx Zoo parking lot). This would allow the 5 to serve White Plains Road at all times with no need to run shuttle service at night, fill in the large gap between the WP Road and Concourse Lines, and provide subway service at the Bronx Zoo (which most people currently drive to).

The other possible extension would be crosstown on 125th Street, providing transfers to all subway lines it crosses. This would allow passengers on the 1, A, B, C, and D lines a transfer to the East Side, and allow passengers from the 6 line a direct route to the West Side without going down and up between 125th Street and 149th Street Grand Concourse. I think the Q should use the Bronx extension I mentioned earlier, and the T should go crosstown on 125th Street.

Obviously getting the full length SAS completed is a prerequisite to further extensions, but I thought this could be a good discussion.
  by rr503
I like the connection to the fulton local tracks the best -- arguably the most underutilized corridor in the system. 4th can get more local service with W extensions -- fulton is constrained by the A/C merge.
  by trainbrain
It could actually connect to the Fulton local tracks and still use the Montague Street tunnel. It would go through the tunnel and stop at Court Street, Jay Street MetroTech, and DeKalb Ave on the R platforms. Then, instead of going local down 4th Ave, there could be a new track connection built to the local tracks on Fulton Street, and it start making Fulton local stops at Lafayette Ave.
  by Head-end View
Keep on dreaming guys. Considering what it took to get the existing line built, I will be very surprised if the rest of this line even as currently envisioned ever gets built. Has there been any sign at all of construction on the next section even getting started? :(
  by trainbrain
I haven't been on any part of the line since opening day, so I wouldn't have any idea. They may have begun the early portions of utility relocation.

Wikipedia says that they have 1.735 billion dollars already committed to funding Phase 2, they plan to have completed an environmental reevaluation by 2018 and have full funding by 2020, and open around 2027 to 2029. Since Phase 1 has been successful in terms of reducing crowding on the Lex, you'd think they'd be able to build 3 more stops with existing tunnels between them in shorter than 12 years, but that's US infrastructure projects for you. They need to figure out how to complete these projects with similar costs and schedules as other developed countries. My theory for why the original subway lines were completed much faster is because the city was much less built up back then, so they were able to use construction methods that were cheaper, but would be unacceptable due to how disruptive they'd be in today's city. Cut-n-cover is cheap, but it's just not feasible to cut up an entire street for years when the city is as dense as it is now. On the bright side, we've added 5 subway stations in the past 10 years (New SF, 34th Hudson, and the 3 Second Ave stations), so the system is expanding at a faster rate than it previously was.

My hope is that they resolve those issues and are able to complete the other phases more quickly than they currently are saying. Since the car dependent suburban lifestyle is starting to wane in popularity, the city will become more dense in the coming years, and we need to build up the subway to accommodate it.

Another thing I forgot to mention: The Bronx extension that I mentioned earlier had all 5 trains going up WP Road with the 2. However, the terminal at Wakefied 241st Street probably can't handle both services. It might be a better idea to have 5 trains split between the WP Road and Pelham Lines if the Q ever takes over Dyre Ave. This would give Pelham Line passengers access to an express service in Manhattan.
  by Head-end View
Interesting that the extension of the #7 line seemed to get built more easily and faster than the SAS.
  by railfan365
To comment on several posts:

1. The most reccently promised full length SAS is planned to provide for extension to Brooklyn, The Bronx, AND West Harlem.

2. As to Phase II getting built - it's on it's way - very slowly. tility realignment and more studies are planned to be done in 2019, to be followed by snails pace construction to be done by 2029. And the money for it is already commited, and planned fo rin the next capitol budget. Yes, it's ridiculous for them to be taking so long, but that's how they're planning it.

3. Finally, while Phase I is builit and operating, Phase II is in the works, and a full SAS is badly needed - I believe that there are only even odds of Phase III getting done due to the corruption and ineptitude that cause all projects to take too long and cost too much.
  by trainbrain
East Side Access remains the laughing stock of all large transportation projects where the opening date keeps getting pushed back even though construction is ongoing. The 1st phase of Second Ave took too long, but it did get open within a couple years of the original date set when they restarted construction.

Phase 2 will get done as it's already funded, but for 3 stations with existing tunnels between them to take 10 years to build and cost as much as it's going to is an absolute embarrassment and disgrace.
  by Head-end View
And MTA's not doing much better with LIRR's East Side Access, but at least that hadn't been delayed since the 1950's........... :wink:
  by Jeff Smith
Head-end View wrote:Interesting that the extension of the #7 line seemed to get built more easily and faster than the SAS.
I believe the city fully-funded the 7, and it's had its problems (34th St. station leaks, no station on 10th).