MTA Press Releases

Press Release
October 29, 2019
MTA Delivers Progress Update on Sandy Recovery and Resiliency Program on Seventh Anniversary of Superstorm

Coney Island Yard Complex –World’s Largest Rapid Transit Yard – Marks Resiliency Milestone with Construction of State-of-the-Art Elevated Cable Bridge

Looking Back: A Selection of Photos from Superstorm Sandy and the MTA’s Recovery is Available Here


The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) today delivered a progress update on Superstorm Sandy restoration and resiliency work on the seventh anniversary of the storm. The MTA also announced that MTA New York City Transit’s Coney Island Yard Complex, the largest rapid transit yard in the world, has reached a resiliency milestone with construction of a state-of-the-art elevated cable bridge that will supply traction power to the entire 74-acre facility, which stores and services 881 subway cars and deploys 71 trains into daily service across six lines.

“We came back from devastation seven years ago and the work to adapt every part of our system has yielded a stronger, smarter, and greener system for millions of New Yorkers,” said MTA Chairman and CEO Patrick J. Foye. “We have a responsibility to the entire region to make sure we finish the job, and we will do so.”

“The work to prepare Coney Island Yard for future storms is essential, and the team at New York City Transit bringing these essential projects to completion deserves immense credit,” said MTA Managing Director Veronique Hakim. “By rebuilding strategically, we are doing essential work to make sure one of our most vital subway facilities for safe and reliable service is resilient to a changing climate.”

“I am proud of the progress that the MTA has made to recover and to rebuild, not just to get the trains and buses moving, but to prepare for the severe weather that our future will bring inevitably due to climate change,” said former MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota, who was MTA chairman at the time when Sandy struck the region. “I am confident that the MTA is more prepared than ever to face storms even stronger than Sandy.”


Superstorm Sandy struck the New York metropolitan area in October 2012, effectively suspending service across the entire MTA region. Record storm surge flooded nine NYC Transit subway tubes with corrosive salt water, submerged two Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) tubes linking Manhattan with Queens and two MTA Bridges and Tunnels vehicular tunnels, and damaged a subway bridge, three subway yards and six bus depots in low-lying areas. Damage was particularly severe in downtown Manhattan near New York Harbor, with the South Ferry subway terminal station filling track to ceiling with salt water. The Coney Island Yard Complex was flooded with 27 million gallons of saltwater and debris, causing extensive damage.

In Metro-North and LIRR service areas, the storm downed trees and poles along hundreds of miles of tracks, damaging equipment, switches, crossings, overhead wires and facilities housing railcars and locomotives.

The MTA has made substantial progress to restore, repair and fortify its infrastructure in the event of extreme weather. Over the last seven years, the MTA implemented a robust resiliency program to harden its infrastructure and protect facilities and fleets by installing flood mitigation equipment in subway stations and under-river tunnels, waterproofing facilities, raising critical power and communications equipment above flood levels, rebuilding facilities at higher ground, and installing various protections such as marine doors, flood logs, and flood curtains at 79 station entrances.

Of the projects, one of the most significant is the ongoing resiliency work at the large Coney Island Yard Complex, which serves the B SubwayD SubwayF SubwayN SubwayQ SubwayR Subway subway lines. The 74-acre complex can store up to 881 rail cars and houses four repair shops, a rail car wash and various equipment and support facilities. The Coney Island Yard Project, which began in March 2018 and is estimated to take 54 months, will install flood mitigation and other protections across the facility, including a new 4,280-foot-long bridge to carry power feeders and communication cables across yard tracks in order to provide traction power to the entire yard. The bridge project recently marked a major resiliency milestone with the first section of the cable bridge steel truss spans delivered and installed. The bridge will carry cables to provide third-rail power to the entire yard overhead rather than burying the cables underground, offering better protection and making them easier to maintain. During this work, N trains will terminate at 86 St in Brooklyn, and the MTA is providing free out-of-system MetroCard transfers between the nearby 86 St N Subway and Avenue X F Subway stations. Customers are also encouraged to use a free transfer from the B1 or B4 bus to the F Subway line.



•    New perimeter flood wall: Installing approximately 12,000 linear feet of flood wall driven approximately 30 feet below ground

Completed: More than 4,300 linear feet of perimeter flood wall ranging from 8 to 14 feet high

•    Improved drainage: Installing 21,000 linear feet of new drainage

Completed: 3,300 linear feet of new drain lines

•    New tracks: 600 linear feet of new track and third rail installed

•    Other elements of the projects planned or underway:

- nine flood gates

- two new pump stations

- debris protection at creek bridges

- replacement of power and communications cable

- hardening the Traction Power Motor Shop


An update on a selection of major MTA restoration and resiliency projects is below.


NYC Transit:

  • Rehabilitating nine under-river subway tunnels:
    Completed: Montague R Subway, Greenpoint G Subway, Steinway 7 Subway, Cranberry A SubwayC Subway, 53rd Street E SubwayM Subway, Joralemon 4 Subway5 Subway, Clark Street 2 Subway3 Subway
    Underway: Canarsie L Subway
    Remaining: Rutgers F Subway
  • Repairing damage at subway yards:
    Completed: Rockaway Park A SubwayC Subway Yard
    Underway: Coney Island B SubwayD SubwayF SubwayN SubwayQ SubwayR Subway Yard, 207th Street A SubwayC Subway Yard, 148th Street 3 Subway Yard
  • Reconstructing South Ferry 1 Subway Terminal: Completed and reopened in June 2017
  • Repairing Staten Island Railway infrastructure:
    Rehabilitating the St. George Terminal: Completed March 2017
    Construction: New flood wall for St. George Terminal
    Reconstruction underway: Clifton Shop
  • Installing mitigation equipment: Approximately 3,500 points of water entry for the subway system received either permanent or temporary custom-made flood protection devices. Some examples include 24 doors similar to those used on submarines, each weighing 3,000 pounds; 2,300 waterproof gates deployed underneath sidewalk grates for station vents; 1,700 portable vent covers; and 68 flexible stairwell covers that can withstand up to 14 feet of water
  • Reinforcing outdoor tracks: Sheet pile walls have been installed along the A Subway line tracks to the Rockaways that extend 30 feet below ground and 10 feet above ground to protect from storm surge



MTA Bridges and Tunnels

  • Queens Midtown Tunnel and Hugh L. Carey Tunnel:
    - Eight 29 feet-by-14-feet high, 2-foot thick, 44,600-pound flood doors have been installed at the tunnel entrances
    - Reconstruction of electrical, lighting, communications and pumping systems, and replacement of the tunnel wall tiles, ceiling panels, catwalks, curbs and gutters, have been completed at both tunnels
    - Seawall at the Governors Island Ventilation Building raised 13 feet, and new emergency generator installed at higher elevation
  • Cross Bay Bridge and Marine Parkway Bridge:
    - Electrical equipment and substations replaced and elevated
    - Upgraded erosion protection at abutments


Long Island Rail Road

  • Replacing substations: Three substations at Oceanside, Oil City and Long Beach were replaced at new flood protection standards along the Long Beach Branch, and one was upgraded on First Avenue
  • New emergency management equipment: 23 out of 29 pieces of new equipment, such as generators, bucket trucks, portable radio kits, pumps and trailers, have been purchased and delivered, with the remaining currently under procurement.
  • Repairing damage underway at train yards:
  • Long Island City: Replacing underground power, lighting and communications systems; electrification of two tracks.
  • West Side Yard: Replacing third rail components, switch machines, tower controls, communications and power equipment.


Metro-North Railroad

  • Fleet restoration: 11 Shoreliner coaches, including trucks, brake and power systems, have been restored
  • Right-of-way restoration: Shoreline along the Hudson from Mott Haven to Poughkeepsie was restored, including placing ballast at critical locations such as culverts, bridge foundations, stair foundations and other infrastructure adjacent to the shoreline
  • Three damaged substations in Riverdale, Tarrytown and Croton-Harmon were replaced with higher new substations at new flood protection standard. Final testing is anticipated to begin in late 2019.
  • Harlem River Lift Bridge Facility Houses: These facilities, which contain power-feeding equipment that operates the bridge opening mechanism, were rebuilt to a higher elevation and installed with watertight doors and sump pumps. New power cables were also installed to provide redundancy power




As the nation’s largest public transportation provider, the MTA offsets effects of global warming and climate change by keeping New Yorkers’ carbon emissions to the lowest per-capita in the country. By taking MTA services, New Yorkers drive far less than most Americans, live in communities that are walking and bicycling friendly and drive shorter distances even when they have to drive. The MTA’s operations are responsible for a net reduction of 17 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions every year.