2nd Avenue Subway: What It Means to the Market

The Upper East Side (UES), especially around the Yorkville neighborhood, has been a cornucopia of affordable apartments for thousands of New Yorkers throughout the years. Affordable apartments have peppered the area mostly due to a “subway desert” making the commute downtown for those living east of Lexington Avenue a headache. Especially for those living near Second Avenue or, even worse, First Avenue—the walk to stations on Lex can add considerable walking distance to get to the 4,5, & 6 lines—the city’s busiest trains.

 The proposed 2nd Avenue line has been in development as far back as 1919 but after the Great Depression, funding has never solidified. Until this year.

 The 2nd Avenue Subway will launch in 3 phases—Phase 1 (to be completed in December of 2016) being the redirection of the Q train from 57th Street to 96th Street/2nd Avenue. Phase 2 will then extend the Q train further north, terminating at 125th Street. Phase 3 (and allegedly Phase 4) will introduce the T train, which will run north and south of the island originating at 125th street and eliminating at Hanover Square, running along 2nd Avenue in the UES. You can view the MTA’s map here.

 Impacts on prices to the real estate market in the area are already being felt—for years many have avoided the area in part because of the commute, but also because of the noisy and constant construction along 2nd Avenue where the stations for Phase 1 are located. Rental prices are still affordable and will probably remain so until the alleged T train becomes a reality.

 However, you can expect prices for rentals along the Phase 1 route to inch upward between 2nd Avenue/72nd Street and 96th Streets not too long after the new Q stations open in December. This first phase will have a significant increase in the convenience of UES living, as residents will now have a shorter walk to their trains to get Downtown.