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MTA announces first contract in phase two of Second Avenue extension

New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority has awarded the first construction contract for the extension of the Second Avenue Subway from 96 Street to 125 Street in Harlem to C.A.C. Industries, Inc. a family-owned heavy civil contractor based in New York City, specializing in infrastructure projects. New York Gov. Kathy Hochul made the announcement on on Jan. 22.

Spectrum News NY 1 reported that the initial $182 million award is for the first component of the Second Avenue Subway Phase 2 project, which will finally deliver subway service to residents of East Harlem, one of the most transit-dependent neighborhoods in New York City.

“We’re moving full speed ahead to extend the Second Avenue Subway to East Harlem, expanding transit access for thousands of New Yorkers,” Governor Hochul said. “This critical milestone will put shovels in the ground for the next phase of this transformative project. East Harlem has dreamed of transit access for decades – and we’re committed to getting the job done.”

It is the first of four construction contracts for the new line, which will extend the ​train from 96 Street to 125 Street, serving more than 100,000 average daily riders and building three new ADA-accessible stations for the East Harlem community. The contract will relocate underground utilities from 105 Street to 110 Street on Second Avenue at the site of the future 106 Street Station, in order to facilitate the subsequent cut-and-cover construction of the station.

MTA Chair and CEO Janno Lieber said, “Phase 2 of the Second Avenue Subway will change lives and expand opportunities by bringing transit equity to the East Harlem community who have waited decades for this. The expansion of the Second Avenue Subway will get more than 100,000 daily riders to jobs, education and recreation not only in the city but throughout the region.”

MTA Construction and Development President Jamie Torres-Springer said, “The MTA is implementing valuable lessons learned from past projects into Phase 2 of the Second Avenue Subway, and this contract reflects our new approach by proactively relocating utilities upfront. Improving this process will help deliver this project more efficiently and provide residents of East Harlem with increased transportation options better, faster, and cheaper than before.”

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer said, “I fought tooth and nail to ensure that the Bipartisan infrastructure and jobs law made historic investments in transit, and because of that, the federal government committed to $3.4 Billion for the Second Avenue Subway project this fall. I am proud to see that work on the project is advancing to the next contract. The Second Avenue Subway project will expand the subway in East Harlem and beyond, connecting thousands of riders to jobs, school, entertainment, friends, family and new opportunities.”

U.S. Senator Kristen Gillibrand said, “This federal investment will make a real difference in the lives of East Harlem residents, and I’m very pleased that Phase 2 of the Second Avenue Subway project is moving forward. The expansion of the Second Avenue Subway line will ease commute times, reduce congestion, create local jobs, and connect the community more seamlessly with the rest of the city. I’m proud to have worked to pass the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that provided the funding to make projects like this possible, and I’ll keep fighting for resources for New York’s straphangers.”

In July, the MTA also unveiled new conceptual renderings of the proposed stations for the extension, providing future riders with a first-ever glimpse into the potential station interior and exterior designs. The draft renderings are subject to further design development and are available here.

Revenue from congestion pricing will support $15 billion in funding for critical projects in the MTA’s current capital program, which includes Second Avenue Subway Phase 2.

The second phase of the project will extend ​train service from 96 Street north to 125 Street and then west on 125 Street to Park Avenue, approximately 1.5 miles in total. There will be two new stations at 106 Street and 116 Street on Second Ave, and a direct passenger connection with the existing 125 Street subway station on the Lexington Avenue subway line. Phase 2 will also feature an entrance at Park Avenue to allow convenient transfers to the Metro-North Railroad 125 Street Station.

Each station will have above-ground ancillary buildings that house ventilation, mechanical, and electrical equipment, as well as space for possible ground-floor retail and community uses. The expansion will serve an additional 100,000 daily riders and provide three new ADA accessible stations – raising the bar for customer comfort and convenience. Increased multimodal transit connectivity at the 125 Street station at Park Avenue with connections to the​​​ Metro-North trains and the M60 Select Bus Service to LaGuardia Airport, will allow for convenient transfers to other subway and commuter rail lines, facilitating smoother, faster transportation across the city and metropolitan region.

Phase 1 of the project extended the ​line from 63 Street to 96 Street and was New York City’s largest expansion of the subway system in 50 years. Service opened on January 1, 2017, with additional stations at 72 Street and 86 Street. Since its completion, the Second Avenue Subway has carried more than 130 million passengers in total, including more than 200,000 passengers on a typical pre-pandemic day.

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