Monday, February 24, 2020

City Council's tunnel visions for the BQE

NY Daily News/MSN

 New York City officials on Monday pitched an $11 billion tunnel to keep cars off a crumbling stretch of the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway.

A consulting firm hired by the City Council last year floated the tunnel idea as an alternative to the city Department of Transportation’s previous plan to fix the dilapidated road, which would have cost $4 billion to repair and to build a temporary highway above the beloved Brooklyn Heights Promenade during construction.

The tunnel would stretch 3 miles from the Gowanus Expressway where it meets the Prospect 

Expressway to the BQE’s south Williamsburg trench near Bedford Ave. It’s modeled after similar projects in other U.S. cities, such as Boston’s 1.5-mile “Big Dig” tunnel that ended up costing the city $22 billion.

The Council’s consultant also recommended another $3.2 billion idea pitched by architecture firm Bjarke Ingels Group last year to build a park atop a new capped six-lane highway adjacent to the promenade.

Council Speaker Corey Johnson called the rebuilding of the highway a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” but declined to endorse either pitch.

If the city goes with the tunnel option, it would cost more than the estimated $7.2 billion price tag for the first two phases of the Second Ave. subway, which hopes to extend the Q line to East Harlem over the next decade.

The tunnel, which the consultant said would take seven to 10 years to construct, would cost about 35% more. The MTA expects the first two phases of the Second Ave. subway will draw an additional 290,000 daily riders, while the Council’s consultant said the proposed tunnel would be used by some 153,000 vehicles a day.

The BQE tunnel idea was met with skepticism by other Council members, who questioned the city’s ability to build large-scale projects.

“We haven’t been able to build anything on this scale since the ’60s,” said Councilman Joseph Borelli (R-S.I.). “I am less concerned about the price tag than I am over whether a future mayor will have the intestinal fortitude to see it through.”

The DOT is in the middle of an environmental review process for all of the proposals to fix the BQE that is expected to drag on for at least another year.


Anonymous said...

If we trust the City Council for this BQE tunnel we are doomed.
They couldn't run a womens brazier shop !

Anonymous said...

How much did the consulting firm charge?

Anonymous said...

I'm actually shocked they suggested keeping the BQE. I thought they were gonna say get rid of the highway altogether and replace it with a bike lane.

Anonymous said...

>“We haven’t been able to build anything on this scale since the ’60s,”

Why is this? What changed?

Anonymous said...

Why is this? What changed?

Total Far-Left one party control of New York has led to where we are today !
Get out while you can and live your life with family and friends.
The Left has no plan and that's what so dangerous !
Last night the curmudgeon Democrats on the debate stage just a bunch of loony socialists and not one American flag in sight!

Anonymous said...

>Total Far-Left one party control of New York has led to where we are today !

But this City had total far-left control then too. Heck, even more so than now, from back in the Tammany Hall days to the 60s themselves, with RINO Lindsey as mayor.
So, what changed?

panzer65 said...

The city needs to invest in its rail infrastructure, the heavy trucks need a way to move their freight around the city, and this highway is past is useful life. The proposed cross harbor tunnel looks light years away, and soon the bridges will need a major overhaul as well.