Maloney & House Transportation Cmte. Chair Mica Tour 2nd Ave. Subway Site, Discuss Progress of Subway, Fed. Transportation Bill
Nov 1, 2011
New York, NY – U.S. Reps. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and John Mica (R-FL), Chairman of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, today toured the recently-completed tunnels for the first phase of the Second Avenue Subway. After the tour, Maloney and Mica discussed the progress of the Second Avenue Subway and of the long-term reauthorization of federal transportation programs.
Following the tour, Chairman Mica said that he will help ensure full-funding of the federal government’s share of the costs for first phase of the Second Avenue Subway. The federal government must contribute $309 million over the next two years to fulfill its $1.3 billion commitment -pursuant to a full-funding grant agreement governing the project- for the subway’s first phase.
“The Second Avenue Subway is a great example of what can be done when we invest in our infrastructure, and I thank Chairman Mica for committing to help ensure that the federal government meets its responsibility to fund the subway’s first phase. On its first day of operation, the new subway will carry roughly 202,000 people per day -more than the transit systems of Boston, Chicago, and San Francisco combined- and ease the pressure on the Lexington Avenue line, the most overcrowded subway in America. We need to build more projects like the Second Avenue Subway to remain competitive in the international marketplace, but these projects are too expensive for state and local governments to do on their own --the federal government needs to contribute. I am glad that both Chairman Mica and Chairwoman Boxer are moving forward with strong transportation authorization bills – which are critically important to the competitiveness and well-being of our nation,” said Maloney.
“For the benefit of other major transportation and infrastructure projects like the Second Avenue Subway, and the stability needed to undertake these kinds of projects around the country, it is essential that Congress complete a six-year transportation bill as soon as possible,” said Chairman Mica.
The MTA completed all the tunneling required for the first phase of the Second Avenue Subway in September – when a tunnel-boring machine excavating the second -and last- of the project’s two tunnels broke through to the existing tunnel at the Lexington Avenue/63rd Street station. The MTA will still have to complete station entrances, ancillary buildings, and track preparation. The MTA projects that the subway’s first phase will be completed in December 2016.
The full-length Second Avenue Subway will be an 8 ½ mile, two-track line beginning at 125th street and ending in Hanover Square in lower Manhattan. The subway’s first segment will include stops at 96th, 86th and 72nd Streets, and tunnels from 99th to 62nd Streets. At 63rd Street, the new subway line will link onto the existing Q-line tracks, providing a one-seat ride from the Upper East Side to Times Square, Wall Street, and Brooklyn. Construction of the full-length subway has been divided into four phases. Once completed, the first subway phase will carry more than 213,000 riders each day and relieve massive congestion on the most overcrowded subway routes in the nation: the 4, 5, and 6 Lexington Avenue IRT trains on Manhattan's East Side.
In June, the Federal Transit Administration announced that $197 million in funding for the Second Avenue Subway will be coming to the MTA this year as part of the Full Funding Grant Agreement governing the project, which was signed in November 2007 and will provide $1.3 billion in federal funds to build the subway’s first leg. Full-funding grant agreements are commitments by the federal government to provide a total amount of funding, delivered in installments, over the life of a project.