Repair work to remove debris and any remaining loose brick from the architectural façade of the ceiling at the 181st Street station is proceeding around the clock, but more work needs to be completed before 1 train service can resume between the 168th Street and Dyckman Street stations.
In order to resume train
operation through the 181st Street station, NYC Transit has enlisted the
services of a qualified contractor who will build a protective barrier that
will stretch across the track bed and platform in the area of the arched
portion of the historic ceiling that suffered a partial collapse Sunday
evening. The barrier will be about 300 feet long and 32 feet wide at the southern
half of the station. The shielding will consist of metal decking supported on
120 12-inch deep steel beams spaced three feet apart on centers across the
tracks. The beams will be supported by columns erected adjacent to the platform
walls. Temporary lighting will be strung under the shielding.
Once the shielding is in
place, the contractor will use it as a work platform to carefully remove any
remaining loose bricks. A consultant will conduct a full investigation and
design for restoration. Given the landmark status of the station, the
restoration has to be done with sensitivity to preservation requirements.
Preparatory work has
begun in anticipation of the arrival of the steel and other components needed
to erect the shield. The contractor, under the supervision of NYC Transit’s
Capital Program Management Department, is moving as expeditiously as possible
to complete this work in a safe manner in order to restore service.
Shielding was installed
over the bridge and funding was proposed in the MTA Capital Plan amendment
submitted in summer of 2008 to address the ceiling condition. A Master Plan for
remediation and repair of a significant portion of the ceiling façade was
completed in April, and the design process was started this past June by design
consultants/Architects John di Domenico & Partners LP. Funding for the
work, provided for in the 2005 – 2009 MTA Capital Program, was approved by the
State Legislature this past Friday.
Design work is scheduled
to be completed by December and the award of a construction contract is planned
for early 2010. In addition, there are two other stations (168th Street 1 and 181st
Street on the A) with a similar design, but only 168th Street features a brick
ceiling. The consultant contract for the 181st Street ceiling will be expanded
to include inspection of the 168th Street station as well. It should be noted
that all NYC Transit tunnels and elevated structures are inspected on a yearly