Biden infrastructure plan could fund 2nd Ave. subway extension, Gateway tunnel overhaul

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The extension of the Second Avenue subway uptown and the Gateway project to shore up rail tunnels under the Hudson River are ripe for funding under President Biden’s $2 trillion infrastructure package, according to Sen. Chuck Schumer.

“The American Jobs Plan outlines $85 billion in transit investments, $80 billion for Amtrak intercity rail infrastructure investments, and $25 billion for special, complex infrastructure projects of national significance,” Schumer, the Senate Majority Leader said.

Schumer said the Gateway-Hudson River tunnels overhaul is critical for the Amtrak’s East Coast service corridor.

“Gateway is the most significant joint Amtrak-transit infrastructure project in the country, and therefore ripe for funding from the president’s jobs plan. I look forward to advancing this funding through the Senate to get Gateway built,.” Schumer said in a statement.

Schumer spokesman Angelo Roefaro also said the Second Avenue subway expansion would be a priority for the senator, among other projects.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer speaking at a news conference on March 25, 2021.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer speaks at a news conference on March 25, 2021.
REUTERS

Extending the Second Avenue line is also a majority priority for Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

“We will further extend the Second Avenue Subway from 96th Street to 125th Street,” Cuomo said during State of the State address. “That will open up the East Side all the way up to Harlem for new, exciting possibilities.”

But billions of dollars in funding are needed to make that happen.

The Second Avenue subway’s first phase, from 59th to 96th streets, opened in 2017 after a half-century of delays.

Other projects that could be eligible include: Building an AirTrain from LaGuardia Airport to Willet’s Point/connecting to #7 line and the Long Island Railroad; extending the Utica Avenue subway line to underserved south Brooklyn communities; a new Port Authority bus terminal and continuing makeover of Penn Station; fixing the Brooklyn Queens Expressway in Brooklyn Heights; and a continuing makeover of JFK airport.

The offices of Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio declined comment.

But both leaders have also made expansion of broadband service into undeserved communities and schools a priority.

The city and state may also apply for funding for clean energy projects, such as the $250 million proposal to build the Big Apple’s first Green Energy hub along the Queens waterfront in Long Island City, near where the aborted Amazon campus was supposed to be built.

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Erin Mosley

Erin Mosley writes for the Hollywood section of Newzinto.