A long-awaited extension of New York’s 7 train opened on September 13, taking the line to the west side of Manhattan. The new station is impressive, and it’s expected to rejuvenate its surrounding neighborhood.
The 1.5-mile subway extension runs from Times Square to a new station at 34th Street and 11th Avenue, in the center of the future Hudson Yards redevelopment. Deep underground, the station requires two sets of escalators or an incline elevator to reach the platform mezzanine.
The mezzanine runs the length of the station, which features a wide island platform that would be well suited to the crowds of a major transfer station.
The station entrance sits amidst a new park that will one day be surrounded by skyscrapers.
The Hudson Yards station is the first to be added to the New York City subway since 1989, not including a replacement South Ferry station that opened in 2009. While a definite achievement for the city, Yonah Freemark, author of The Transport Politic, tweets that other global cities like London and Paris have opened far more new subway stations during the same period.
Excited about opening of new NYC 34th St, first new stop since 1989. But over same period, Paris has opened 11 new stops, London 8— Yonah Freemark (@yfreemark) September 14, 2015
The new Hudson Yards station is part of a massive redevelopment plan for the West Side of Manhattan. The master plan calls for 17 million square feet of new commercial and residential space and 14 acres of green space for the neighborhood.
This is similar to what the NoMa-Gallaudet University Metro station did for the near northeast neighborhood of Washington DC. When it opened in 2004, it primarily served empty lots and the former Greyhound Station. Today, it is at the center of booming NoMa, a neighborhood that NoMa BID president Robin Eve-Jasper has said will become the densest in the District when it is built out.
The 7 train extension, like so many things in New York, is bigger in almost every aspect than its Washington DC counterpart. But it achieves the same means — as a catalyst for a new and vibrant neighborhood.