Breakthrough! After a year of digging, the gigantic tunnel boring machine broke through the final wall of bedrock to complete the underground tunnel for a new 7 train to Manhattan’s far West Side.
There is now one long corridor through the earth that stretches from Times Square to 26th Street and 11th Avenue. In three years, the 7 train will extend to a new stop at 34th Street and 11th Avenue.
That’s the future site of Hudson Yards. The area along 11th Avenue is now mostly auto-body shops and parking lots, but Mayor Michael Bloomberg envisions it as a new neighborhood of apartments, offices and schools. An extended 7 train will provide a vital rail link and incentive to get the area developed, said the mayor.
The $2.1 billion subway extension was funded entirely with city taxpayer dollars.
If funds are found, the city may open a second stop at 41st Street and 10th Avenue, which transit advocates and property owners say is desperately needed.
“Thousands of apartments have been built, and thousands of people live around 10th Avenue,” said Andrew Albert, a member of the New York City Transit Riders Council. “And they have a long walk to the Port Authority subway.”