Manhattan has a world beneath it

<p>Fifteen stories beneath 42nd Street construction crews are tunnelingbedrock, building four new tunnels that will carry the Long Island RailRoad to Grand Central Terminal. <br /></p>

 

Fifteen stories beneath 42nd Street construction crews are tunneling bedrock, building four new tunnels that will carry the Long Island Rail Road to Grand Central Terminal.

“It’s a different world,” said Cuthbert Cyrus, who’s been doing the job for five years. “We say we’re working on our tunnel tan when we’re down here. Sometimes when I get to work at 6 a.m. and leave at 4, you don’t see the sun all day.”

Graffiti on the walls reads “No Rats” – a reminder to miners not to leave their lunch lying around.

“We see a lot of rats down here,” said Cyrus, a member of tunnel digging Sandhog’s union.

When finished the new LIRR terminal at Grand Central will be 110 feet beneath the main dining concourse.

Crews break up rock with a tunnel-boring machine; when they get deep enough, they use dynamite.

They’re cutting through Manhattan schist, a type of rock that forms the backbone of Manhattan island and helps support many of the city’s towering skyscrapers.

 
 
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