86th Street (Second Avenue Subway)

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Not to be confused with 86th Street (IRT Second Avenue Line).
86th Street
under construction
Future New York City Subway rapid transit station
SAS 9614 (17755768338).jpg
Station construction in May 2015
Station statistics
Address 86th Street & Second Avenue
New York, NY 10028
Borough Manhattan
Locale Upper East Side, Yorkville
Coordinates 40°46′40.3″N 73°57′6.3″W / 40.777861°N 73.951750°W / 40.777861; -73.951750Coordinates: 40°46′40.3″N 73°57′6.3″W / 40.777861°N 73.951750°W / 40.777861; -73.951750
Division B (IND)
Line       IND Second Avenue Line
Services under construction
Transit connections Bus transport NYCT Bus: M15 (SB), M15 SBS (SB), M86 SBS
Structure Underground
Platforms 1 island platform
Tracks 2
Other information
Opened December 30, 2016; 2 months' time (2016-12-30)[1][2][3] (Planned)
Accessible Handicapped/disabled access
Station succession

Next Handicapped/disabled access north 96th Street: under construction
Next Handicapped/disabled access south 72nd Street: under construction

86th Street is an under construction station[4] on the first phase of the Second Avenue Line of the New York City Subway.[5][6][7] Located at the intersection of Second Avenue and 86th Street on the Upper East Side, It is expected to open on December 30, 2016, with the Q train providing full-time service, as well as some N service during rush hours.[1][2][3][8][9][10] The station will have two tracks and an island platform.

Station layout[edit]

G Street level Exits/Entrances
B1 Upper Mezzanine Escalators and stairs to Exits/Entrances and lower mezzanine
B2 Lower Mezzanine Fare control, station agent, MetroCard vending machines
Staircases and elevators to platforms
Platform level
Southbound No service (present)
NYCS-bull-trans-Q.svg (NYCS-bull-trans-N.svg rush hours) (under construction) toward Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue (72nd Street)
Island platform, not in service
Northbound No service (present)
NYCS-bull-trans-Q.svg (NYCS-bull-trans-N.svg rush hours) (under construction) toward 96th Street (Terminus)

The station is built so that it is more wide open than most other underground stations in the system;[11] its architecture, along with two other Second Avenue Subway stations, was compared to a Washington Metro station by Dr. Michael Horodniceanu, President of MTA Capital Construction.[12] The platform is 93 feet (28 m) below ground.[13] The platform for the 86th Street station, like the other Second Avenue Subway stations, is 27.8 feet (8.5 m) wide.[14][15]

The station will have air-cooling systems to make it at least 10 °F (6 °C) cooler than other subway stations during the summer.[16] This will require the station to have large ventilation and ancillary buildings, rather than traditional subway grates.[17] The station will also be compliant with current fire codes, whereas most existing stations are not.[18]


Station artwork will be a series of twelve portraits of the city's cultural figures by artist Chuck Close,[19] spread over 2,000 square feet (190 m2) of wall.[20][21]

Entrances, exits, and ancillary buildings[edit]

There are 3 entrances and exits under construction. This includes 10 escalators and one elevator.[22]

Exit location Exit Type Number of exits
Entrance 1
Within building at NE corner of Second Avenue and 83rd Street
Entrance 2
NE corner of Second Avenue and 86th Street
Escalator 2
Entrance 2
SE corner of Second Avenue and 86th Street
Elevator Handicapped/disabled access 1

Also under construction are two ancillary buildings that will store station equipment:[23][24]

  • Ancillary 1, SW corner of Second Avenue and 83rd Street
  • Ancillary 2, NW corner of Second Avenue and 86th Street

Controversy emerged over the station in February 2011, when a lawsuit was filed by the Yorkshire Towers over the location of Entrance 2, whose two locations were located right in front of the building but facing away from its semicircular driveway.[25][26] The entrances, planned to service 3,600 people an hour, were alleged in the lawsuit to be destroying the quality of life for building tenants, if the entrances were to be built in the location.[25] The lawsuit was later dismissed.[27][28]


Station cavern


The Second Avenue Line was originally proposed in 1919 as part of a massive expansion of what would become the Independent Subway System (IND).[29][30]:203 Work on the line never commenced, as the Great Depression crushed the economy.[31] Numerous plans for the Second Avenue Subway appeared throughout the 20th century, but these were usually deferred due to lack of funds. In anticipation of the never-built new subway line, the Second and Third Avenue elevated lines were demolished in 1942 and 1955, respectively.[32][33] The Second Avenue Elevated had one station at 86th Street and Second Avenue—right above the same intersection where the under-construction subway station is located[34]—while the Third Avenue Elevated had two stops on nearby Third Avenue at 84th Street and 89th Street.[35]

Tunnel portal at edge of station cavern


As part of the New York City Transit Authority's 1968 Program for Action, the construction of the full-length Second Avenue Subway was proposed. It was to be built in two phases—the first phase from 126th to 34th Streets, the second phase from 34th to Whitehall Streets.[36][37]

In 1999, the Regional Plan Association considered a full-length Second Avenue Subway, which include 86th Street as one of its planned 31 stations. The main station entrance would be at 86th Street to the north, with additional exits between 86th and 82nd Streets to the south.[38] Planning for the station was finalized in June 2007.[39][40]


On September 15, 2011, the contract for building the station was awarded to the joint venture of Skanska USA and Traylor Bros Inc.[41] As of January 17, 2013, the cavern stretching from 83rd to 87th Streets was 57% excavated.[42] By July 2013, construction of the station was 53% complete.[43] The final blast for the 86th Street station was completed for an escalator cavern on November 22, 2013. Skanska/Traylor were still installing waterproofing and steel reinforcement, as well as putting concrete around the underground cavern, entrances, and ancillaries.[44] As of May 2014, entrances 1 and 2 are being built, and excavation is 100% complete;[45] as of December 2014, the station shell is complete, bringing the total Second Avenue Subway project progress to three-fourths completion.[46][47][48]

The station was scheduled to be completed by May 16, 2016,[45] but the estimated completion date has been pushed back to October 2016.[49][50] It is planned to open on December 30, 2016, along with the other two stations on the Second Avenue Line.[1][2][3]


Since 2013, construction of the station has caused the value of real estate in the area to rise.[51][52] However, construction has temporarily made the prices of real estate decrease to "affordable" levels.[53] Although the surrounding area's real estate prices had been declining since the 1990s, there had been increases in the purchases and leases of residential units around the area, causing real estate prices to rise again.[54] Some businesses near the station's construction site had also lost profits.[55]

Second Avenue Subway Community Information Center[edit]

The Second Avenue Subway Community Information Center, which gives information about Phase I construction to community members, is located nearby, at 1628 Second Avenue between 84th and 85th Streets.[56] It opened on July 25, 2013.[57][58][59] On May 23, 2014, a new exhibit about the construction techniques used to build the Second Avenue Subway, titled "En Route: The Techniques and Technologies Used to Build the Second Avenue Subway", was launched at the center.[60][61] In addition, a train simulator allows visitors to simulate the operation of a Second Avenue Subway train.[62] Throughout the process of construction, the MTA also gave intermittent tours of the construction site to Upper East Side residents with reservations.[63]


  1. ^ a b c Second Avenue Subway
  2. ^ a b c MTA.info—Second Avenue Subway Quarterly Report Q4 2013
  3. ^ a b c The Launch Box—Fewer Than 1,000 Days to Go!
  4. ^ "MTA Awards Contract to Build 2nd Ave Subway Station at 86th St.". MTA.info. September 15, 2011. Retrieved September 15, 2011. 
  5. ^ Neuman, William (April 9, 2007). "Is That Finally the Sound of a 2nd Ave. Subway?". The New York Times. Retrieved June 28, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Tunneling Begins Under Second Avenue". Metropolitan Transportation Authority. May 14, 2010. Archived from the original on June 6, 2011. Retrieved June 28, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Excavation of West Tunnel for Second Avenue Subway Complete". Metropolitan Transportation Authority. February 4, 2011. Retrieved June 28, 2011. 
  8. ^ "SUB-DIVISION B TRAIN OPERATOR/CONDUCTOR ROAD & NON-ROAD WORK PROGRAMS IN EFFECT: NOVEMBER 6, 2016" (PDF). progressiveaction.info. New York City Transit. July 29, 2016. Retrieved August 19, 2016. 
  9. ^ "Reproduction of MTA Construction Company schedule sheet". Retrieved September 16, 2014. 
  10. ^ "MTA | Press Release | NYC Transit | MTA Advances Work On Second Avenue Subway Service". www.mta.info. Retrieved 2016-02-19. 
  11. ^ Hession, Michael (May 2, 2014). "A Subterranean Stroll Through NYC's Newest Train Tunnel". Gizmodo. Retrieved May 13, 2014. 
  12. ^ Rivoli, Dan (May 1, 2014). "Second Avenue Subway progress: Dec. 2016 end date on track". AM New York. Retrieved May 14, 2014. 
  13. ^ Metropolitan Transportation Authority. "Second Avenue Subway March 2014 Public Workshop Follow-Up Report, page 23" (PDF). Retrieved April 21, 2016. 
  14. ^ "A Tour of NYC's Newest Subway Station With Its Architect". Curbed NY. 2015-09-21. Retrieved 2015-09-24. 
  15. ^ Second Avenue Subway — Past, Present & Future
  16. ^ Donohue, Pete (August 4, 2006). "Cooler Subways Coming Eventually". Daily News. New York. Archived from the original on October 10, 2007. Retrieved December 12, 2008. 
  17. ^ Roberts, Sam (September 30, 2013). "No Heel Hazards (or Gusts) as Subway Expands". New York Times. New York. Retrieved May 5, 2014. 
  18. ^ Nolan, Caitlin (May 16, 2014). "Second Avenue subway line construction is progressing: officials". NY Daily News. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  19. ^ Ben Yakas (January 22, 2014). "Here's What The Second Avenue Subway Will Look Like When It's Filled With Art". Gothamist. Retrieved May 5, 2014. 
  20. ^ Noreen Malone (May 14, 2012), Chuck Close Will Make the Second Avenue Subway Pretty. New York Magazine.
  21. ^ Mondkar, Bushan (January 22, 2014). "Subway Art on the Future Second Avenue Subway Line Revealed". Untapped Cities. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  22. ^ MTA.info—Newsletter February 2012
  23. ^ mta.info—July 2015 Task Force Presentation
  24. ^ mta.info—August 2015 Newsletter
  25. ^ a b "Upper East Side Building Sues MTA Over Planned Subway Entrances". DNA Info. February 17, 2011. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  26. ^ "Owners and Tenants of Yorkshire Towers Sue to Relocate Planned 86th Street Entrances to Second Avenue Subway". Anderson Kill. February 17, 2011. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  27. ^ "NIMBY suit opposing 86th St. entrances dismissed". Second Avenue Sagas. June 18, 2013. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  28. ^ United States District Court for the Southern District of New York86th Street station lawsuit dismissed
  29. ^ "www.nycsubway.org: Second Avenue Subway: The Line That Almost Never Was". nycsubway.org. 1972. Retrieved September 30, 2015. 
  30. ^ Raskin, Joseph (2013). The Routes Not Taken: A Trip Through New York City's Unbuilt Subway System. Fordham University Press. ISBN 978-0-8232-5369-2. 
  31. ^ "IND Second System 1929 Plan". nycsubway.org. Retrieved 2016-03-25. 
  32. ^ "Second Avenue Subway Project - History". 2002-10-19. Archived from the original on 2002-10-19. Retrieved 2016-02-15. 
  33. ^ "Last Train Rumbles On Third Ave. 'El'; An Era Ends With Final Run of Third Avenue 'El' LAST TRAIN ROLLS ON THIRD AVE. 'EL'". Retrieved 2016-08-23. 
  34. ^ See:
  35. ^ See:
  36. ^ nycsubway.org—The New York Transit Authority in the 1970s
  37. ^ "DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL STATEMENT, SECOND AVENUE SUBWAY, ROUTE 132-A". Urban Mass Transportation Administration. nycsubway.org. August 1971. Retrieved May 22, 2014. 
  38. ^ Metrolink, p.20
  39. ^ MTA.info—Second Avenue Subway Project 96th Street Station
  40. ^ Rubinstein, Dana (October 23, 2013). "Where is the Second Avenue Subway going?". Capital New York. Retrieved May 15, 2014. 
  41. ^ "Skanksa JV set to build Second Avenue's 86th St. station :: Second Ave. Sagas". Second Avenue Sagas. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  42. ^ MTA.info—Newsletter February 2013
  43. ^ "VIDEO: Construction of Second Ave. subway at 86th St. chugging along in NYC". NY Daily News. July 11, 2013. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  44. ^ "MTA | news | Second Avenue Subway Reaches Major Milestones". MTA.info. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  45. ^ a b mta.info—May 2014 Newsletter
  46. ^ Hawkins, Andrew J. (18 December 2014). "Second Avenue subway's first phase is 76% done". Crain's. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  47. ^ "Second Avenue Subway Hits Key Milestone With Completion Of 86th Street Station Shell". CBS New York. 18 December 2014. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  48. ^ "MTA Finishes Shell for 86th Street Station of Second Avenue Subway". NY1. 18 December 2014. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  49. ^ mta.info-April 2015 Newsletter
  50. ^ mta.info March 2015 report from Transit & Bus Committee
  51. ^ "Shops along Second Ave. subway line construction sites want big bucks in 2014". NY Daily News. January 7, 2014. Retrieved May 5, 2014. 
  52. ^ Acitelli, Tom (March 1, 2014). "Upper East Side sees boost from Second Avenue subway progress". The Real Deal. Retrieved May 13, 2014. 
  53. ^ Gross, Max (October 24, 2013). "Makeover time along the East River". New York Post. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  54. ^ Hughes, C.J. (2016-04-08). "Yorkville Bets on the Second Avenue Subway". The New York Times. Retrieved 2016-04-13. 
  55. ^ Schlossberg, Tatiana (2 October 2014). "Promise of New Subways Has West Siders Excited and East Siders Skeptical". The New York Times. Retrieved 26 October 2014. 
  56. ^ "mta.info | Capital Programs Second Avenue Subway". MTA.info. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  57. ^ "MTA | news | MTA Opens Second Avenue Subway Community Information Center". MTA.info. July 25, 2013. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  58. ^ "MTA Opens Second Avenue Subway Community Information Center". DNA Info. July 26, 2013. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  59. ^ "MTA Unveils Second Avenue Subway Information Center On Upper East Side". CBS New York. July 25, 2013. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  60. ^ "UES Exhibit Looks at Making of Second Avenue Subway - NY1". Retrieved September 16, 2014. 
  61. ^ "670 Feet Under: The Second Avenue Subway and 5 More Mega-Projects - Architizer". Architizer. Retrieved September 16, 2014. 
  62. ^ mta.info—June 2015 Newsletter
  63. ^ Kanno-Youngs, Zolan (2016-06-19). "Sneaking a Peek at the Second Avenue Subway Line". WSJ. Retrieved 2016-06-20. 

External links[edit]