How do you break ground when it’s already been broken? (Courtesy of The New York Times)
So today’s the day. Part of me is surprised. I grew up in the City in an age when the subways were unsafe and dirty. No one dreamed of expanding the subways because New York didn’t even have the money to maintain their current maze of subway lines and stations.
But by the time I was in high school, taking the 1 (or the now-defunct 9) back and forth to the Bronx ten times a week, times had changed for the New York City subways. They were graffiti-free and safe. While no one will ever mistake the subways for clean, their current level of grubbiness is indicative of widespread use and popularity. It’s hard to clean a system that never sleeps.
In November, when I started this blog, I had a feeling that we would be seeing the Second Ave. subway sooner rather than later. While my dad — a lifelong New Yorker — will not accept the reality of this new subway line until he actually rides on it, guardedly, I can now say that we will have the long-awaited line running down Manhattan’s East Side. It’s not a line that runs from Brooklyn through Manhattan and up to the Bronx, but it’s a start.
And we’re just getting started here. In the city that depends on the subway for so much of its transportation needs, not a day goes by without MTA news. So stick around for the ride. We’re in for the long haul.
Meanwhile, if you’re interested in watching the fourth groundbreaking ceremony for the Second Ave. subway, you’re in luck; NY1 will carry the ceremony live at 10:30 a.m. today.
“The groundbreaking for Second Avenue Subway is a historic moment in the life of New York City, and we’re thrilled that everyone will be able to see it live,” said MTA Executive Director and CEO Elliot G. Sander. “I hope that many people will join us at MTA headquarters for this special day.”
At some point, we’ll have to stop having ceremonies honoring a subway line that should have been built decades ago. But I’ll take it. It’s a much-needed sign of progressing for the albatross that’s been hanging around the subway’s neck since the 1930s. Next stop: 2nd Avenue.