Updated 01/16/2012 10:54 PM
UES Residents Concerned About Smoke From MTA's Second Avenue Construction
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Despite improvements made by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, some Upper East Side residents told NY1 on Monday they were still worried the smoke from the Second Avenue subway construction might make them sick.
The transit agency's $4.5 billion project will go from 96th Street down to 72nd Street, and the line will connect to the Q at 63rd Street and Lexington Avenue.
Most of the residents who spoke with NY1 acknowledged the smoke at the construction site had decreased since the MTA made improvements in December.
Nevertheless, Michael Taylor and his mother reached out to NY1, saying they feel rumbles in their Upper East Side apartment after every underground explosion set off by the MTA, and that it has gone on for a year-and-a-half.
"You're trying work, do something, you're trying to study, it's annoying. It gets in your way," said Taylor.
The Taylors were also concerned that about the smoke from the blasts, which they said seeps into their apartment.
"I'm scared, I don't want to die of cancer when I'm 40," said Taylor.
The MTA has hired Parsons Brinckerhoff to do a four-week air quality study in the neighborhood and says the initial reports show it is within guidelines set by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Residents countered that the firm is conflicted because it does other business with the MTA.
"My concern is the dust in the air and what's in the dust? I'd like somebody who is a neutral third party telling me what's in the air," said a local resident.
"You can see it a couple of blocks away when you walk up. It's a little bit misty in the air and you can certainly smell it," said another resident.
The air quality report is due at the end of this month.
The subway line will not be complete until December 2016.