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MTA concludes blasting work under Grand Central Terminal

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) announced yesterday that sandhogs working on the East Side Access project have concluded major blasting work under Grand Central Terminal, where they are constructing two caverns 160 feet below street level that will house eight tracks for Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) trains.

Since March 2007, about 1,000 employees have completed more than 2,400-controlled blasts without affecting the nearby operations of MTA Metro-North Railroad or MTA New York City Transit, MTA officials said in a prepared statement.

"This is a very significant milestone for the East Side Access project," said Michael Horodniceanu, president of MTA Capital Construction.

A lot of work remains to build the platforms and track and finish what is now raw cave-like space, but workers now have a "fully built shell in which all future work will take place," he added.

The East Side Access project will connect LIRR's Main and Port Washington lines in Queens to a new terminal under Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan.

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