Optimum Customers: Your Newsday access has been extended until Oct 1st. Enroll now to continue your access.


Photos: East Side Access past, present, future

This is a combination of older photos of the East Side Access construction project, dating as far back as 2010, renderings of what the project will look like when it's completed, and photographs taken during a recent tour of the project. The photos include scenes from the complex rail junction at Harold Interlocking in Queens, along with views from inside the tunnels and beneath Grand Central Terminal, where the future Long Island Rail Road tracks, platforms, and concourse will be. 

The cutter head of a tunnel boring machine used to excavate the tunnels leading to Grand Central Terminal, in January 2010.

This is what the East Side Access platform and cavern area looked like in February 2013, when workers were excavating and removing debris.

The view from the future tracks of East Side Access, where trains will pull into the new LIRR terminal underneath Grand Central Terminal. This will be the lower level of two floors of tracks and platforms. Each level will hold four tracks. The bridge above will allow passengers to move between platforms. The concourse will be above both sets of tracks. 


A rendering of the view from the platform of the East Side Access project.There will be two floors of tracks and platforms and each level will hold four tracks. The bridge above will allow passengers to move between platforms. The concourse will be above both sets of tracks. 

During the excavation process, workers drilled and installed bolts for the initial rock support in the caverns that will be home to the East Side Access platforms and tracks. 

The February 2013 placement of a concrete leveling slab in the caverns below Grand Central, where the platforms and tracks for East Side Access are now taking shape. 

The view of the new platform now under construction where LIRR passengers will board their trains. There will be eight LIRR tracks at the new terminal - four on one level, and four above them. 

Renderings of the platform, elevator and trains that will eventually carry passengers from Long Island to the new terminal beneath Grand Central Terminal. 

A rendering showing where LIRR riders will be able to board trains from new platforms like this one, part of the railroad's East Side Access project to connect Long Island to Grand Central Terminal.

The tunnel being built under Manhattan to create East Side Access for the Long Island Rail Road to Grand Central Terminal. View is from May 4, 2011. CREDIT: Newsday photo/Lawrence Striegel

The current view of a future escalator wellway from above. Passengers will head down to the platforms from a new LIRR concourse located on this level. 

Escalators, now installed, will take passengers from the lower platform of the new LIRR terminal to the concourse. These escalators are the longest in the MTA's entire system, at 160 feet in length.

Rendering of what the escalator path leading up towards the new LIRR concourse will look like. 

The curved-arch ceiling above the LIRR's East Side Access platform, far below Grand Central Terminal. 

Part of the ceiling above the platform at the future LIRR East Side Access terminal.

Rendering of the future LIRR concourse.

Workers inspecting the rock after a blast excavation of a tunnel approaching Grand Central Terminal at the end of 2013.

As of December 2013, this is what the initial support for the tunnels heading into Grand Central Terminal looked like. 

A 2014 view looking south into what will be the platforms and tracks of the LIRR's East Side Access terminal.

The current view of the East River tunnel, constructed decades ago, that will now be used for East Side Access to transport trains to the new LIRR terminal at Grand Central Terminal.

Stacks of the resilient rail tie blocks that will support the rails of the new East Side Access tracks.

At the railroad junction known as Harold Interlocking, the MTA is installing new infrastructure, including this overhead catenary used by Amtrak. 

In Sunnyside, workers are creating a new mid-day storage yard for Long Island Rail Road trains. 

Rendering of future waiting area at the LIRR concourse beneath Grand Central Terminal. 

A view of the path that will take LIRR riders up to the main concourse.