Wednesday, October 19, 2011

What's Under Wraps on Second Avenue?

It was a cool, cloudy Saturday in October when I ventured out to take pictures for this post.

This was the first Saturday I could recall when there were no workers at any of the MTA sites on Second Avenue.

Despite this disappointing lack of worker activity, I was happy to find that the autumn lighting showed off exquisitely the shapes, colors and textures found at the Second Avenue Subway construction project.

Just south of 96th Street - looking E

Here, a German-made Liebherr Crawler Crane (Model HS 855) sits idle. This particular crane is fitted with something known as a hydraulic slurry wall grab.

During work days, the machine is used to excavate the holes for the reinforced-concrete slurry walls around the northern end of the new 96th Street station.

94th Street - looking N

In the foreground, you can see a set of steel rods that has been laid out.

These rods will be used to construct cages for the slurry walls. A single cage is lowered into the excavated hole and then concrete is poured into the hole.

94th Street - looking SE

At this location, you can see an example of the blue fence wrapping material that the MTA has been installing to make their work sites on Second Avenue look a little more attractive.

One downside to the fence covering is that it makes it somewhat difficult for the police driving by to see what is happening on the sidewalk and inside the stores.

93rd Street - looking E

The muck tower at this location now sits idle. Its job is now complete.

The machine had been used, along with a set of conveyor belts under the road decking, to raise the muck that was produced by the TBM to a point where it could be loaded into waiting trucks on the street.

btw. 92nd & 91st street - looking E

Look carefully in this image and you can see a newly opened business with the the name BAR Off The Rails (a clever name).

The previous bar at 1754 Second Avenue, the Red Rock Road House, went out of business in November 2007. The location was vacant since then.

91st Street - looking S

Another example of the MTA's site beautification efforts.

The orange poles, which I've heard referred to as lollipops, are meant to provide a sense of separation between the pedestrian crosswalk and the road space allocated to automobile traffic.


A close-up shot of the fence wrapping material.

By Bruce Martin
87th Street - SE corner - looking SW

This is an aerial view of the north access shaft, now decked over, for the 86th Street station cavern mining contract.

The image was kindly provided to me by a resident of the neighborhood who happens to live above this section of the work site.

btw. 83rd & 84th streets - looking S

This area has recently been cleared of heavy construction machinery. It would appear that the contractor, J. D'Annunzio & Sons, Inc., is in the process of clearing this work site so that it can be passed off to the next contractor, Skanska / Traylor JV.

D'Annunzio's contract, which is scheduled to wrap up this month, was for excavation, utility relocation and road decking in and around the future location of the 86th Street station.

btw. 83rd & 84th streets - looking S

A closer view of area above the road decking that has recently been installed above the south access shaft.

This shaft will be used during the mining of the 86th Street station cavern.

74th Street - looking S

An example of the wayfinding signage that the MTA has set up near their construction sites on Second Avenue.


This sign, which is self explanatory, is required per New York Department of Transportation regulations.

The regulations require that an informational sign of this format be posted at the site of all construction projects lasting longer than three months

73rd Street - looking S

A view of the temporary offices that have been set up at this work site.

(left-click on the image for a closer look)

This official notice from the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) makes reference to a citation that was issued for a hazardous condition found at this work site.

The notice informs the employees that there was a violation of an OSHA regulation. However, it apparently does not state exactly what that violation was.

The notice does say that the contractor was fined $3,500 for the violation.

Update - 10/24/11
OSHA cited the contractor at this location, Schiavonne Shea Kiewit JV (SSK Constructors), for two violations: (1) smoking at a work site where explosives were being used, and (2) failure to wait [15 minutes] before entering an area where explosives had been discharged. (Ref. OSHA Citation No. 315551374)

72nd Street - SE corner - looking NW

The contractor, SSK Constructors, is in the process of dismantling the now empty building at 235 East 92nd Street.

An ancillary building for the new 72nd Street station will be erected on the site. The new structure, which also will include an entrance to the station, will be about the same size as the existing structure.

72nd Street - SW corner - looking NE

A view of the temporary muck house that now sits between 72nd & 73rd Streets.


Now a few current images from underground, courtesy of the MTA.

MTA / C1 - Disassembly of the TBM

This is a recent view of the front section of the TBM.

The TBM, which completed the east tunnel on 9/22/11, has now been pulled back to the launch box at 92nd Street.

The machine will be disassembled in place and removed from the site via the glory hole that is located on the SE corner of 92nd Street & Second Avenue.

MTA / C1 - Disassembly of the TBM

This is view of the south end of the launch box - with the front section of the TBM positioned directly in front of the east tunnel, on the left.

MTA / C4B - G3S1 Cavern Excavation in progress

This is a recent view of the so-called G3S1 cavern that is being excavated just south of the 72nd Street station cavern.

At the south end of this cavern, there will be two tunnels:
- a tunnel on the right that will lead to the Lexington Ave/63rd Street station, and
- a tunnel on the left, to be mined in the future, that will continue south under Second Avenue.

A footnote:
This posting contains several images taken by the MTA and/or its contractors. The brown lines of text directly under the MTA images indicate (1) ownership of the photos and (2) the unedited captions that MTA Capital Construction applied to the images. The MTA gave me permission to reproduce the images here on this blog.


2nd Avenue Subway Blast
Video (0:28) - via YouTube - 10/15/11

This rather dramtic video apparently shows what it looked like inside the 72nd Street station cavern when a blast was set off. It is not clear who posted the video on YouTube, but it is clear that this is not an official MTA video.


Here's a listing of the recent additions
to the right-hand column of The Launch Box

Building Transit Today: The Second Avenue Subway
By Jake Schabas
untapped new york - 10/4/11

This interesting article includes a very nice set of recent images from underground.


Off Topic:
The Stockholm City Line

In Stockholm, the Swedish Transport Administration is building a new 6-km (3.7 mile) long commuter rail tunnel under the main part of the city, 2 new rail stations, and a 1.4 km (0.9 mile) long railway bridge.

The project, estimated to cost 16.8 Billion Swedish Kroner ($2.54 Billion) was started in 2007 and is projected to be completed in 2017.

Here are several images from the Stockholm City Line's Flickr web site.



For more information, follow these links:

Stockholm City Line's Web site
(translated from Swedish to English by Google Translate)

Stockholm City Line's YouTube Channel

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So. It looks like for the tunnels proper (as opposed to the station excavation) to be finished requires:
- G3S1 cavern
- G3S2 cavern
- Horseshoe Tunnel
(in that order, clearly)

-G4S2 cavern 1
-G4S2 cavern 2

Any idea what the timeline for these two "ordinary mining" projects are? It would be nice to know when it's "just stations"...