The 7 Train Extension

seven train extensionIt’s raining and the water comes down in little diamond sparkles and guys enter the cafe soaked with hair pushed off to one side of their foreheads and their thick glasses spotty with raindrops. The bush outside the cafe waves and twitters and rocks back and forth.

Today I explored the 7 train extension in the bowels of the Port Authority. They’re opening a new subway station at 34th and 11th and it cost $1.1. billion. I originally thought they were extending the train to Chelsea but the shafts at 25th street are just release shafts and the tunnel extends to store the extra seven trains. The plan was supposed to be to encourage New Jersey travel but then Christie vetoed the monies and gave them back to the Fed, so the station is ready for an extension, one day. The Gateway Project, proposed by Amtrak will connect the 34th St. station with Penn Station.

The tunnels extend a bit along the seven line and are abandoned; they used to carry passengers directly to Coney Island or the Raceway. They are merging the existing tunnel with the new one. It was hot in the concrete tunnels, which had been bored by fifty foot machines and filled with concrete. The tunnel boring machines can only go through rock and there was a section near 40th street that wasn’t rock so they had to freeze it so that the TBM could drill. They were also supposed to have a station at 41st and 10th but they didn’t have enough funds so they only built the shaft ducts and I guess will wait for it to be one day completed.

The station will by ready by New Years 2014.

By Daniel Ryan Adler

Daniel Adler writes fiction and nonfiction and is finishing his MFA at University of South Carolina.

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