A $2.4 billion subway extension of the No. 7 line will soon be stopping at Manhattan's 34th Street West Side, giving birth to a new neighborhood for families, office workers and shoppers, officials said Friday.
The Hudson Yards Station on 11th Avenue and 34th Street is adjacent to the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, which historically has been a no-man's-land without access to public transportation. The station is scheduled to open in June 2014.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, MTA officials, and commercial and residential developers rode into the 34th Street Hudson Yards station on a No. 7 train Friday to announce the new stop. The extension adds a mile and a half of tracks to the Queens line.
"Today proves that big transit projects can be done," Bloomberg said. He was presented with a chunk of rock excavated from the underground project that burrowed 9,285 feet underground from 26th Street to Times Square.
The subway station's state-of-the-art design will offer wider staircases and platforms without columns; enclosed elevators that ride on an incline to make them handicap accessible; and five escalators that will take commuters 108 feet below street level.
Bloomberg said the new subway station is a concrete example of a future vision for New York City where hundreds of thousands of new residents and office workers will come to work and live. "We can never shortchange the future," he said.
Billionaire developer Stephen Ross said at Friday's news conference that the Hudson Yards neighborhood will have 14 million square feet of office, hotel, residential and retail space. It will have private schools, a public school and 1,600 affordable housing units, Ross said.
"This will reverberate what we see in Chelsea," said Ross, referring to the neighborhood south of the new station that was proposed with the hopes of building a football stadium and hosting the Olympic Games.
"We didn't get the stadium . . . but we didn't walk away," Bloomberg said. He added that the proposals spurred development of the West Side. It is expected that 27,000 riders will use the station at peak hours.
"The design of this station will make it the largest capacity station in the city," said Shawn Kildare, an MTA senior vice president for the project.
Work still to be completed includes subway tiling and the installation of the station's heating and ventilation system.