Grand Central Station
Friday, October 14, 2011
By Julia Furlan : WNYC Culture Producer
Visitors and passerby to Grand Central Station can now take a look through a window in South Korea. For "Through My Window," the photographer Ahae took more than a million pictures through the window of his house, which overlooks an organic nature preserve in South Korea.
Thursday, September 08, 2011
By Amy Eddings
It sounds weird, but Beth Kronk and Jim Horch owe their relationship to the terrorist attacks of September 11. Beth and Jim met on a subway in the sad, chaotic week that followed.
Monday, June 20, 2011
By Jim O'Grady
U.S. Senator Charles Schumer says New Jersey's transportation loss should be Long Island's gain.
The Senator is supporting a $2.2 billion low-interest loan from the federal government to the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority. The money was originally earmarked for a commuter rail tunnel under the Hudson River that Governor Chris Christie killed in October. Schumer says it should now go to finishing East Side Access, a project connecting Long Island Railroad to Grand Central Station through tunnels beneath the East River. Long Island Railroad is the nation's largest commuter line.
East Side Access is supposed to be done by 2016, but is only funded through the end of the year. The project is designed to speed up trips for about 160,000 riders from Long Island to Manhattan's East Side by as much as 30 to 40 minutes.
More than $5 billion in state and federal funds have already been spent on the new rail connection, one of the largest infrastructure projects in the U.S. But East Side Access is still facing a $2.2 billion shortfall.
The MTA applied for the loan in late April to the Federal Railroad Administration, which is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. Spokesman Aaron Donovan said the authority is "in discussions with the U.S. DOT as part of the application process but we don't have an estimate on when we'll hear back."
U.S. DOT spokeswoman Olivia Alair said "We do not have comment on this today."
Most Long Island Railroad trains cross under Manhattan to arrive at Penn Station on the West Side, adding to congestion at that station and forcing commuters with jobs on the East Side to double back by bus or subway. Schumer said eliminating that bottleneck and adding flexibility to the system will "boost New York as the economic engine of the region."
Monday, May 02, 2011
(Andrea Bernstein, Transportation Nation) On September 12th, 2001, New Yorkers tried to go to work. Since so many subway lines were disrupted, that often meant taking routes WAY out of the way, and miles and miles of walking. But, accustomed to getting around obstacles, New Yorkers shrugged and tried anyway. What else could we do?
When, a few days later, the city began offering a ferry service from Brooklyn to replace the lost subways, those ferries were packed. I rode the first one over into Manhattan, tilting my head from side to side, trying to comprehend the Lower Manhattan skyline without the twin towers.
Later that fall, when the U.S. declared war on the Taliban, Mayor Rudy Giuliani encouraged everyone to go out, go to work, "go see "Proof" -- referring to a popular Broadway show. The streets were packed that day, a gorgeous October Sunday, even though New York City was more or less on red alert.
After the London Underground was bombed in July 2005, I was posted at Grand Central station. Commuters were taken aback that I would even ask if they'd thought twice about going to work. "What else would I do, stop my life?" was the general sentiment. (And "No" was the answer.)
Today was no different. Osama bin Laden was shot and killed, the government is on high alert for retaliation, and we are going to work.
WNYC's Jim O'Grady has been at Grand Central Station. He writes:
"Checked every train, bus and light rail line on NJ Transit website and found no current delays. Boards at Grand Central still reporting good service, as is the MTA website, but for a train delayed on the Ronkonkoma line due to medical emergency.
"In a sign of normalcy, a man billing himself as Galdort Gumbo is playing a Yamaha piano in the lower concourse and singing emo versions of Billy Joel, James Taylor and "Easy" by Lionel Ritchie. America endures."
WNYC's Ailsa Chang was reporting from Times Square. She noted any obvious increased police presence as "very minimal. Times Square looked only slightly more policed today, but I think I only noticed because I was trying to look for police cars."
One WNYC staffer's husband said the car commute through the Lincoln Tunnel was faster than usual, but so far, most other reports are that this was a normal morning commute, and MTA spokesman Jeremy Soffin says the Authority didn't note any drop in ridership.
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