Photo: Metropolitan Transportation Authority / Patrick Cashin
Fifteen months after Hurricane Sandy, a big infusion of federal funding will help the Metropolitan Transportation Authority continue to rebuild and prep for future storms, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced on Friday.
The Federal Transit Administration has approved $886 million in funding for the MTA, about two-thirds of which will go toward repairs of three underwater tunnels that were badly damaged in the storm: the Montague, Steinway and Greenpoint tunnels, which respectively carry the R, 7, and G trains.
The seawater wrought havoc on the electrical systems, signals and other communications, causing periodic shutdowns and service disruptions that have frustrated commuters on all three lines.
“There are many challenges a transit system faces in the months and years after suffering the types of severe impacts we did during Sandy,” MTA Chairman Thomas F. Prendergast said. “The work of rebuilding carries on behind the scenes long after the storm has left the public consciousness."
"This funding is essential in helping us to address those needs and to allow us to continue to provide service at the same time that we build back stronger than we were before the storm.”
The majority of the funding will go toward bolstering the subway system, but $104 million will go to the Metro-North and $146 million will go to the Long Island Railroad.
The grant is just the first installment in what will eventually amount to a $3.8 billion total award for the MTA.