Subway Service Returns to South Ferry

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On Thursday, New Yorkers will ride the subway like it's 1999.

Or really 2009, because that's the last time the old South Ferry station saw action.

The formerly decommissioned station is being pressed back into service while the newer station -- heavily damaged by Superstorm Sandy -- undergoes extensive repairs that could take several years. The old station is built around a tight curve in the tracks at the Lower Manhattan terminus of the 1 line that subway trains sometimes use to turn around. And the platform is shorter than the length of a train: passengers using the retro station will need to sit in the first five cars to exit.
Related: Old South Ferry Station, Replaced At a Cost of $530 Million, Pressed Back Into Service

South Ferry is used by tens of thousands of Staten Island Ferry riders. Their convenient connection to the 1 train was lost when Sandy flooded the new South Ferry station. Since then, the 1 line has been starting and ending at Rector Street, which inserts a ten minute walk into Staten Islanders' already long commutes.

Related: Video: South Ferry Subway Station, Post-Sandy

The MTA estimated several weeks ago that returning service to the decommissioned station would cost about $2 million. (Read about the scope of the work here.) Meanwhile, restoring service to the three-year old station destroyed by Sandy will cost about 300 times more.

Workers restoring the old South Ferry station (photo courtesy of NY MTA)

Related: To Replace One Station After Sandy, A Cost of $600 Million

The MTA is still working on restoring another post-Sandy subway service gap: A train service to the Rockaways.

The South Ferry subway station, flooded during Sandy, will take years to replace. (Photo by Metropolitan Transportation Authority / Patrick Cashin)