Thursday, November 13, 2008

Second Avenue Subway, Maybe Not All the Way

As the transport politic puts it, the Second Avenue Subway is definitely needed to relieve overcrowding on the Lexington Avenue Lines (4,5,6) but should be amended to provide a crosstown connection as well as better serve those further away from Second Avenue. He believes that there should be two major changes to the plan:
  1. A crosstown route from 125th St. on the East Side of Manhattan to the West Side, connecting the 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, A, B, C, and D lines in Upper Manhattan. It makes it a lot more convenient for riders, as this would eliminate the need for waiting for a bus as well as increase ridership overall. (Presently, none of the lines in Upper Manhattan truly enable East-West travel there.)
  2. A slight diversion from Second Avenue south of 14th St. and down Avenues B/C into the East Village, where it currently maybe just one of the few remaining parts of Manhattan that do not come within a short walking distance of a subway stop. The East Village is also home to many mixed small and medium density residential buildings. In addition, politic stresses that the planned SAS is only two avenue blocks away from the Lex. Ave. Line, making little difference anyways and would attract more riders if shifted East (plus one more station than currently planned). The SAS would then return to its namesake avenue at Chatham Square.
"But the most important point is this: since all three stations will be built where subway service already exists, no new areas of the city become more easily transit-accessible...The Second Avenue Subway’s downtown route should be significantly revised to provide two significant improvements: one, increasing subway access to currently transit-deprived areas of the city; and two, improving transfer opportunities for passengers who currently have trouble moving between lines."

Although the 125th St. Fault may present a problem for the Westward expansion of the SAS, and a deviation from the MTA's plan may cost more money that they do not have, the proposed scheme is of an interesting note and should be taken as an alternative by the MTA. Since the proposed changes do not affect the current Phase of construction, changes would not be met with cries of wastefulness.

A tip of the hat to the transport politic for this and many thought-worthy suggestions. Each day, he provides a lengthy and well-researched article (but a good read nonetheless) with independently made diagrams and maps. Bravo! You have earned my respect!

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