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It's been 33 years since the last Second Avenue Subway groundbreaking, so it's high time for new generations of straphangers to revel in the hope of a new subway line. We also expect the public -- especially the Upper East Side-residing public -- to become jaded with construction delays, traffic issues, and noise. Here's the press release from the MTA:

Tomorrow morning's historic groundbreaking ceremony for the Second Avenue Subway can be seen by all New Yorkers live on NY1, beginning at 10:30 a.m. The groundbreaking ceremony will take place in one of the subway tunnels built under Second Ave. in the 1970s but never used. Due to the limited capacity of the tunnel, the MTA arranged for the live broadcast with NY1 and will open its board room at 347 Madison Avenue for members of the public to join MTA staff for a public viewing and celebration.

The ceremony will include a video presentation, remarks from federal, state and local officials and then the moment everyone has been waiting for as the assembled dignitaries ceremonially chip away at the tunnel wall, beginning the subway's southern journey.

"The groundbreaking for Second Avenue Subway is a historic moment in the life of New York City, and we're thrilled that everyone will be able to see it live," said MTA Executive Director and CEO Elliot G. Sander. "I hope that many people will join us at MTA headquarters for this special day."

Beginning on Friday, the ceremony will also be available on NY1 On Demand, channel 1110.

We wonder how many people are going, because aren't subway tunnels, you know, fairly spacious? Anyway, thank goodness for NY1. MTA Executive Director Elliot Sander assured NY1's Bobby Cuza that the MTA has "three-quarters of the money, as well as really strong support from Washington, Albany and the city," we bet someone knows the over-under on this project.

Sander is also featured in the Observer, who talks 2nd Avenue Subway, MTA Chairman Peter Kalikow and the job in general. He also wrote an ode to the 2nd Avenue Subway in Metro: "With funding in place and the political will to build, New York is finally going to have the East Side service this world city deserves."

The groundbreaking is at 99th Street/101st Street and 2nd Avenue. The Second Avenue Subway will be called the T line, and the first phase of construction will be service between 96th and 63rd Streets, to meet up with the Q.

Update:
As the groundbreaking for the subway starts today at 10:30, we'll be watching along with NY1 (they're going to broadcast live from the groundbreaking) and giving you some thoughts.

10:30: No groundbreaking ceremony yet. The MTA is already behind schedule on the 2nd Avenue Subway! Clearly a sign of things to come!

10:34: MTA Director Elliot Sander is unsure of whether this is the 3rd or 4th groundbreaking. Is this kind of like how they have problems with keeping their books straight? They're showing a video on the background and problems in the 2nd Ave. line's history. It looks like they are underground for the ceremony, as it looks rather dark and dingy (and because there are hardhats in the background). There may not be A/C in the tunnels on the line, but something called "air tempering".

10:42: Sandler is thanking all the people that laid the foundation for the project and that have fought to bring the project to where it is today. He has confidence in the ability to complete the project as they are "here to finish the job." Every station will be ADA compliant and post-9/11 safety concerns will be addressed. Sandler says that the 2nd Ave Subway is no longer a bad joke, but our future.

10:46 Peter Kalikow steps to the podium and tells us that we now have the money (and political support) for the project, which is why it's different than the last groundbreakings.

10:48: Kalikow introduces Dan Doctoroff, who says it really is a "great day" because as goes the 2nd Ave Subway, so goes NY. He goes over the starts and stops of the project, backing up the statement. Well done, Doctoroff, well done. We're asserting our confidence and optomisim in the furure, that we've learned the lessons of the past and we won't relent as we move through the four phases of the project. In a few month's we'll be breaking ground on the 7 line extension and East-Side Access. We need these improvements to compete with other cities around the world. And how we grow depends on how we move people around the city and the region. Bloomberg isn't there today.

10:52: Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer is now at the podium and asks if anybody remembers who the borough president was in 1925, because he doesn't. The people in Manhattan recognize that this is a valuable economic engine and gives a "shout out" to Representative Carolyn Maloney people that did work to get this project going.

10:54: Council Speaker Christine Quinn now gets her time at the podium. She echos Stringer's "shout out" to Carolyn Maloney. Quinn says that she made the campaign promise to get the subway done, even though she had no real sense that she would be able to follow through on. Brings her dad on stage to deliver a story she heard as a child. She's now delivering to her dad, who was told in 1934 by his father that the subway was being built.

10:57: Carolyn Maloney is now up and says that it's the 4th groundbreaking. This project is a partnership at all levels - city, state, and federal. Praises Spitzer's support of the subway, Speaker Sheldon Silver for holding up the budget for the subway (now we have $1.5 billion because of his stalling), and praises Bloomberg as well. On day one it will move 191,000 people, more than any other federal project. She calls the Lexington line the most overburdened line in the nation (by some accounts) and relieve the line by 13%.

11:02: FTA Administrator Jim Simpson. NYC represents 1/3 of the nation's transit riders. Congress asked him if he would be biased for NYC if he was approved as administrator. He said of course he would. Lived on Sullivan before it was fashionable, then to Brooklyn, then to Staten Island. The full line is competitive (but no promise) for funding in the future. He wants thinking out of the box with partnerships to get this project done sooner. "If we're going to take this 2nd Ave subway down to Wall Street, maybe Wall Street can help us build it."

11:05: Speaker Silver and thanks his cronies in the State Senate. He's the first to mention 9/11 (we won't count the security features) and Ground Zero, but his tone is putting us to sleep. "Yes, there have been groundbreakings in the past, but I will join Congresswoman Maloney in saying 'the fourth time is the charm.'"

11:10: Governor Spitzer wasn't sure if he was going to a groundbreaking for a water tunnel or subway tunnel when he looked at his schedule this morning after he woke up. It's "deja vu all over again, all over again, all over again." This is different than the past, because we have the money. He wrote a paper in "urban economics class" as a junior in college that found that subways were a remarkable investment. He says that in order to benefit from the influx of people, this line is integral in the long term. Thankfully, Spitzer is the last speaker. While the boring machines will make a lot of noise, noise in this case is a good thing.

11:14: As they are getting ready to hit the wall for the "groundbreaking", tons of photographers jockey for position and NY1's still camera is rendered all but useless. Hopefully nobody hurts their back! And isn't Bobby Cuza on the scene? Why not give us play-by-play on the actual groundbreaking part?

11:16: It looks like ground has been broken as the flash stops popping and the leaders walk away from the podium. Ah ha! As they cut away, NY1 has a shot down the subway that reveals they are in the subway tunnel and that the backdrop was the side of subway tunnel. Perhaps they were actually in a future station delivering the press-conference.

Photograph of one of the subway tunnels built in the 1970s by Satan's Laundromat