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New entrance to Grand Central being built on 47th Street

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A new street entrance to the underground corridors serving Grand Central Terminal in New York City is being built on the south side of 47th Street midway between Park Avenue and Lexington Avenue. The new entrance will include a reversible escalator connecting the street level to the 47th Street cross passageway as well as a staircase from the street to the platform between Tracks 11 and 13 and from the platform down into the cross passageway. Currently the east end of the 47th Street cross passageway has no outlet.

The work is part of MTA
Long Island Rail Road’s East Side Access project, which will bring LIRR
commuters from Long Island and Eastern Queens to the east side of Manhattan in
a new concourse being built under Grand Central Terminal.

"This new entrance
will be a tremendous benefit to both current Metro-North customers and future
LIRR customers by providing a fifth northern means of ingress and egress to the
trains," said Metro-North President Howard Permut.

The 47th Street cross
passage runs directly below street level from Lexington Avenue to Madison
Avenue and has staircases that lead to every train platform on the upper level
of Grand Central. (From the 47th Street cross passage, people also can use two
north-south walkways to reach the 45th Street cross passage, which connects to
all lower level platforms.) People who work north of Grand Central use the
north end exits to save up to 15 minutes walking time to and from their
offices.

"This entrance is an
example of how construction can be staged so that customers can enjoy
incremental benefits as each element of a project is completed," said MTA
Capital Construction President Dr. Michael Horodniceanu.

Work will also take place
at the south end of the platform where Track 13 will be extended to the south
due to the loss of some space at the north end of the platform for the
staircases and escalator. The purpose is to maintain a 10-car-length platform.

The work, now under way, will
cost $14 million and take 20 months to complete. During construction, this
platform will be out of service.

When LIRR’s East Side
Access project is complete in December 2016, there also will be a connection
between the new LIRR Concourse and the west end of the 47th Street cross passage
to allow LIRR commuters the benefit of a shortcut in a weather-protected
environment.

The new entrance comes up
inside the lobby of 245 Park Avenue, which occupies the block between 46th and
47th streets between Park and Lexington avenues. The entrance, which will open
in September 2011, will be a glass storefront on the south side of 47th Street
mid-block.

Brookfield Properties
made this entrance possible by donating the easement needed to establish this new
entrance.

The construction is being
done by Yonkers Contracting Company, Inc.

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