NEW YORK—The public will not get to enjoy the 7 line extension on the city’s far west side until next fall, but the man who helped get it built, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, took the inaugural ride on Friday.
Bloomberg was joined by local and elected officials and his two daughters, Emma and a nine-months pregnant Georgina.
“It [the first ride] is the perfect symbol of what New York City has become, a place where big projects can be done,” Mayor Bloomberg said from the platform of the new stop on Friday.
The $2.4 billion project is the first city-funded subway extension in 63 years. The new project adds one stop to the west of Times Square which stops at 34th Street and 11th Avenue. The new stop will serve what is projected to be the next great epicenter of Manhattan, Hudson Yards.
“This project is the lynchpin of the most ambitious transit oriented mixed-use development project our city has ever undertaken,” Bloomberg said.
Hudson Yards will change the skyline of Manhattan with four new towers when it is complete. The development will have 14 million square feet of office, hotel, and residential space, including a new school.
During his tenure Bloomberg invested heavily in capital projects including the Water Tunnel No. 3, school donstruction, and the 7 line extension. The mayor spoke several times about the importance of investing in infrastructure.
He noted during the 1970s when the city went through tough fiscal times the city stopped investing in infrastructure. It took decades to get the ball rolling again, something he argued was difficult to do.
“Hopefully we won’t forget that lesson,” Bloomberg said. “There will never be a time when you don’t have the opportunity and necessity to invest in infrastructure.”