Second Avenue Subway’s 96th Street Station Open to Public for Sneak Preview

The long-awaited subway line has been in the works for nearly a century

What to Know

  • Construction on the current iteration of the Second Avenue line began in 2007 but planning for it stretches back generations
  • Under the first phase of the project, trains will run from 63rd Street to 96th Street
  • The second phase will extend the line up to 125th Street

The 96th Street station on the long-awaited Second Avenue subway line is open to the public Thursday and Friday for a sneak preview.

Members of the public will be able to walk inside the station, check out the Metrocard machines, mezzanine, escalators and platforms Thursday and Friday, Gov. Cuomo announced. 

A ceremonial ride on Dec. 31 will usher in train service on the $4.5 billion first phase. Customers can officially begin riding at noon on Jan. 1.

Construction on the current iteration of the Second Avenue line began in 2007 but planning for it stretches back generations. It was first proposed by a Public Service Commission engineer in 1919 as part of an expansion of the transit system; the city has been working on its plan for the line since 1929. 

Under the first phase of the project, trains will run from 63rd Street to 96th Street -- a three-stop extension of the Q train that has been a century in the making. The second phase will extend the line up to 125th Street.

Cuomo previously said the new Q subway stations — at 72nd, 86th and 96th streets — give riders a sense of space and air, and that rubber tracks will quiet the noisy trains as they roll into the stations.

"When have you ever had that sense in the subway system?" he said. "Architecturally, the design, it's much more open." 

Cuomo promised that street life will be better on the congested Upper East Side once the new subway stations open and traffic flows more freely. He wants everyone to come together at the end of the month for the historic moment.

"The mayor, you are invited, the deputy mayor all New Yorkers because this is cause for celebration," he said. 

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