The MTA said Monday that a section of Grand Central’s lower level dining area will close for structural construction on the future Long Island Rail Road extension. 

Dr. Michael Horodniceanu, President of MTA Capital Construction, said the construction to make way for staircases and escalator is a “major milestone” in the East Side Access project that will eventually bring an eight-track LIRR terminal below Grand Central.

The construction affects a 1,920 square foot area of the lower level concourse between Tracks 112 and 115. The MTA said the area, which usually has 44 tables and 140 chairs, will be put elsewhere in the area. No restaurants will close. 

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Horodniceanu said construction will be scheduled with “minimize disruption” to diners and travelers in the rest of the concourse. Construction is expected to take up to 18 months, the MTA said. 

The construction is part of a $430 million contract awarded earlier this year for structural, mechanical, electrical and architecture work on the LIRR concourse. 

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Metro-North spokesman Aaron Donovan said Monday that service is expected to start rolling in December 2022. 

Once completed, the new terminal below Grand Central will connect all 11 branches of the LIRR.