When you really stop to think about it, what’s happening on a day-to-day basis beneath Second Ave. is truly quite impressive. Despite the massively high costs, the slow pace of construction and the fact that all we’re getting is a two-track subway extension, we’re allowed to marvel at the sheer size of the caverns being dug out underneath the Upper East Side and the scope of the engineering work.
I haven’t been inside the work site at Second Ave. in a while, but the MTA’s own Patrick Cashin took a trip there recently. He shared his photos on Flickr, and while it’s tough to capture the enormity of the work in one photograph, his images allow us to see how things are progressing. We see the walls at 72nd Street coming into view and platform areas taking shape.
My favorite shots are those of the work in progress at 63rd St. So many subway riders used the F train at that station and had no idea that a semi-completed platform and set of active tracks were behind the false wall. We can see the tracks and third rail ready for further use. We can see parts of the platform already in revenue service. We can see new staircases and an idle F train.
So take a glimpse through the full set. It’s a great bit of infrastructure porn, and with no promise of funding for future phases any time soon, it may just be the last subway extension in progress for quite some time.