MTA’s 469th Station is First Addition to Subway System in 26 Years

The new 34 St-Hudson Yards 7 Subway Station  is open for business. The station is a modern marvel with 21st Century amenities that introduces subway service to the far West Side of midtown Manhattan, fostering transit-oriented development in the emerging, mixed-use community there. The station makes the 7 Subway the only line south of 59th Street to provide service west of Ninth Avenue, offering access to the Jacob Javits Convention Center, the High Line and the newly opened Hudson River Park.

The $2.42 billion, 1.5-mile extension of the 7 Subway Line to 34 St-11 Av was funded by the City of New York. City funding included $2.1 billion for the station in addition to $266 million for other non-subway related infrastructure work. The MTA contributed $53 million for the extension, helping spur the development and transformation of the rezoned far West Side. It is the first new station added to the subway system since MTA New York City Transit opened the Lexington Av-63 St, Roosevelt Island, and 21 St-Queensbridge stations in 1989.

MTA Chairman and CEO Thomas F. Prendergast was joined by Mayor Bill de Blasio, MTA Capital Construction President Dr. Michael Horodniceanu, New York City Transit Interim President James L. Ferrara and other elected officials and stakeholders to cut the ribbon marking the opening of the 34 St-Hudson Yards 7 Subway Station. The station is expected to serve more than 32,000 entries and exits on weekdays when it opens and is designed to handle as many as 25,000 during a peak hour.

“This station is the centerpiece of an ambitious plan to make the far West Side of Manhattan a top-tier destination for residents and visitors alike while meeting the daily needs of millions of subway riders, and one that is poised to meet future needs,” Governor Andrew M. Cuomo said. “It is a clear example of how the City and State can work together to support a transit network that drives our regional economy.”

“This is a great day, years in the making,” Mayor de Blasio said. “It’s an expression of this city’s capacity to do big things. The 7 Subway train extension is going to anchor new growth and opportunity on the West Side, and will improve the commutes of tens of thousands of New Yorkers. And the new public space opening above is a tremendous addition to the cityscape. We are deeply appreciative of the contributions so many New Yorkers and organizations have made to this project — from Mayor Michael Bloomberg, to the MTA, to Senator Schumer and our local elected officials.”

“Just as the 7 Subway train created neighborhoods like Long Island City, Sunnyside, and Jackson Heights in the 20th Century, this extension instantly creates an accessible new neighborhood right here in Manhattan,” Chairman Prendergast said. “It will improve service reliability for all 7 Subway line customers, and thanks to the foresight of Mayor Bloomberg, it is anchoring the transit-oriented, mixed-use development transforming the far West Side.”

“Wide-open column-free spaces, inclined elevators, air tempering and beautiful mosaic artwork all make the 34 St-Hudson Yards station a true station of the future,” said President Horodniceanu. “This new, modern station will be the lifeline of Manhattan’s newest neighborhood. It will make it possible for thousands of residents, employees and visitors to get to Hudson Yards easily and quickly. Without the extension, this new development would not have been possible.”

“This beautiful new station is just the beginning of the enhanced service the hundreds of thousands of customers on the 7 Subway Line will see in the future,” said Interim President Ferrara. “They now benefit from a station with a modern design that includes a mezzanine and platform which are among the longest and widest in the system, together with the latest technology that allows customers to receive information and communicate with transit personnel. When Communications-Based Train Control is fully installed in 2017, we’ll be able to increase service on the 7 Subway Line to further meet the growing ridership demand on the far West Side as well as in growing neighborhoods in Queens.”

Station Amenities

The station and the new subway line contain state-of-the-art mechanical, electrical and communications equipment and systems. Highly functional public spaces provide capacity for future system changes, integrating signage, lighting, digital advertising and artwork. The new 34 St-Hudson Yards 7 Subway Station contains other notable “firsts” for the New York City Transit subway system including the longest column-free station platform and the longest escalators inside any station.

The station is also the first to comply with ADA requirements with two inclined elevators between the upper and lower mezzanines. The elevators travel 82 feet vertically and 152 feet horizontally at the speed of 100 feet per minute. They can accommodate five wheelchairs or 15 standing customers.

The 34 St-Hudson Yards 7 Subway Station has three public floors — the upper mezzanine (27.6 feet below street level), the lower mezzanine (109 feet below street level) and the platform level (125 feet below street level). Access from the street level to the upper mezzanine at the main entrance is provided by four low-rise escalators and two staircases. An ADA elevator located in the new park outside of the main entrance provides access to the upper mezzanine. From the upper mezzanine, customers will access the lower mezzanine using five high-rise escalators and the two inclined elevators. Eight sets of stairs and one ADA elevator provide access from the lower mezzanine to the platform level.

Among the station’s modern amenities, the platform level is air-tempered, maintaining a year-round temperature between 72 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit.

The station also features 12 Help Point Intercoms that allow customers to communicate with the station agent or the Rail Control Center in the case of an emergency. The station is adorned with 24 55” digital screens on the lower mezzanine that will show advertising and service notices from New York City Transit.

“It was important for us to have digital advertising screens at this beautiful new station,” said Jeff Rosen, MTA Director of Real Estate. “They are aesthetically pleasing, as our advertising licensee, Outfront Media, designed the screens to fit in with the design of the station. We have been very successful in increasing revenues from our digital networks to date, and we see all-digital subway stations as the future of subway advertising.”

Eight On-the-Go screens and cell phone connectivity and Wi-Fi will be added in the near future, all of which will provide a new level of service and communications for customers. Countdown clocks will come to the station upon completion of the installation of Communications-Based Train Control (CBTC) slated for 2017.

The entire 34 St-Hudson Yards 7 Subway Station features high-end finishes such as stainless steel tile wall panels, painted steel ceiling panels, granite floor tile, energy efficient lighting and other architectural features.


Normal weekday service has trains departing 34 St-Hudson Yards every 5 minutes or less (minimum during rush hours is every 2½ minutes) from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., every 6½ minutes until midnight, every 12 minutes until 1 a.m., every 15 minutes until 2 a.m., and every 20 minutes overnight.

On Saturdays, trains depart every 6 minutes or less from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., every 9 minutes or less until midnight, every 12 minutes until 1 a.m., every 15 minutes until 2 a.m., and every 20 minutes overnight. On Sundays, trains depart every 7½ minutes or less from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., every 9 minutes or less until 10 p.m., every 10 minutes until 11 p.m., every 12 minutes until 1 a.m., every 15 minutes until 2 a.m., and every 20 minutes overnight. The approximate travel time from 34 St-Hudson Yards to various stations in Manhattan and Long Island City is as follows:

Station      Minutes from 34-Hudson Yds

Times Sq-42 St      4

5 Av      5

Grand Central-42 St      7

Vernon Blvd-Jackson Av      11

Hunters Point Av      12

Court Sq      14

Queensboro Plaza      16

Customers are reminded that Times Sq-42 St is no longer a terminal station for the 7 Subway and local and express trains will arrive on the same track. Customers at Times Sq-42 St should also be aware that trains will be coming from both directions.

Maps throughout the system are being updated to reflect the new station: subway car maps, jumbo platform maps, online maps, maps on apps, and pocket maps. Approximately 1.25 million pocket maps have been printed, all with a new cover design. An additional 250,000 commemorative maps featuring a special cover for the new station are also available along the 7 Subway Line.

Project History

As part of the redevelopment of Hudson Yards, a 45-square block area on Manhattan’s far West Side, the City of New York and the MTA worked together to extend the 7 Subway Line west from its previous terminus at Times Square. Construction of the extension began in December 2007. For the first time in New York City, tunnel boring machines (TBMs) were used to mine the subway tunnels. Two Herrenknecht-manufactured TBMs burrowed 9,285 feet from Eleventh Avenue and 26th Street to Times Square. As the TBMs mined, they placed pre-cast concrete lining rings along the excavated tunnel, making the permanent liner of the finished tunnel. The first 300 feet of tunneling was complicated by a section of soft ground between 27th and 28th streets that required a technique called “ground freeze” to reinforce the soil, allowing the machines to pass through as if it were solid rock.

Tunneling between 34th Street and Times Square presented other unique challenges, as the line now runs under the existing Eighth Avenue Subway, Amtrak/NJ Transit tunnels, the former New York Central Line tunnels, the Lincoln Tunnel and the Port Authority Bus Terminal. More than 6,500 cubic yards of rock were removed from under the terminal. This was done safely, without impeding Port Authority bus operations and tens of thousands of daily bus passengers. To create the new station cavern below 34th Street and Eleventh Avenue, the contractor used controlled drill-and-blast. Construction resulted in over 409,000 cubic yards of excavated rock, hauled away via 26,900 truck trips.

The project required construction of four ventilation buildings to support the new subway service. Two were designed to support loadings from, and to be incorporated into, future structures that will be constructed over and around them as part of redevelopment of the area. The ventilation facilities are at West 41st Street and Dyer Avenue, West 36th Street and 11th Avenue, West 34th Street and 11th Avenue, and West 26th Street and 11th Avenue. The facilities house tunnel and station ventilation fans; a 13.2 kV electric service for station and building power; a 13.2 kV traction power substation; Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) and battery rooms; communication rooms; and other mechanical, electrical and communication facilities. The ventilation fans eliminate the need for sidewalk gratings used throughout other sections of the subway system.

In January of 2005, the City Council overwhelmingly approved a plan for rezoning the far West Side of Manhattan. The rezoning allows for more than 40 million square feet of mixed-used development, including 24 million square feet of Class A office development and 13,500 new apartments. The approval also resulted in the mapping of public parks and open space. The City created two local development corporations: the Hudson Yards Infrastructure Corporation to finance the costs of the 7 Subway extension, new parks, and other needed infrastructure; and the Hudson Yards Development Corporation (HYDC), which oversaw planning and development in the Hudson Yards on behalf of the City. Hudson Yards is defined as the area bounded by Seventh and Eighth Avenues (east), West 28th/30th Streets (south), West 43rd Street (north) and Hudson River Park (west).

The general contractors for the project included S3II Tunnel Constructors (a joint venture of J.F. Shea Construction, Inc., Skanska Construction, Inc. and Schiavone Construction, Inc.), CCA Civil/Halmar International, L.L.C. (a joint venture of China Construction of America, Inc. and Halmar International, LLC), Skanska/Railworks, J.V. (a joint venture of Skanska Construction, Inc. and Railworks Transit, Inc.), Yonkers Contracting Co., Scalamandre/Oliveira, JV (a joint venture of Peter Scalamandre & Sons, Inc. and Oliveira Contracting, Inc.), and John P. Picone Construction, Inc.

MTA Arts & Design

The station features two mosaic tile artwork installations, one over the low-rise escalators and one in the ceiling dome at the center of the upper mezzanine area. The artwork, “Funktional Vibrations” by Xenobia Bailey, was commissioned by MTA Arts & Design through a competitive selection process.

Bailey’s artwork consists of mosaic totaling approximately 2,788 square feet. At the main entrance, an expansive architectural form suspended above the main escalator and stair entrance was designed by Dattner Architects as the main artwork site. Here the art features a series of overlapping mandala-like circles in various patterns that are set against a deep blue background. In the upper right corner a sun-like form emits rays of contrasting color bands. Starbursts of bright light appear through the blue background. The glass mosaic artwork is vibrant, joyous and rich with pattern and texture.

Bailey sees the work as speaking to the creation of the universe as well as her own creative process, which uses textiles, yarn and beads, for example, to create a unified artwork that vibrates with energy. She refers to her accumulation of materials as being in the tradition of African-American art — as reflected in the music of the 60’s she grew up with and the material culture and design, where one made do with what was available, and made it into something new and wonderful. She considers this the art of funk, and has lectured and written about this thread of art history.

Inside the station mezzanine there is a curved recessed ceiling dome which contains glittering mosaics, also set against a deep blue background with repeating mandala forms and patterns. These began as crocheted pieces, which were transformed into digital images, enlarged and interpreted into mosaic by Miotto Mosaic Art Studio. At the adjacent smaller entrance one block away, which is now under construction, a square-shaped architectural feature above the stairs and escalator serves as the frame for the artwork which will complete the suite of three glowing mosaic art works.

A video of the new 34 St- Hudson Yards 7 Subway Station can be viewed at