Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the Gov. Hugh L. Carey Tunnel, formerly known as the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel, will reopen for cars traveling in peak directions during rush hours at 4 p.m. today.
The eastern tube, which usually carries Manhattan-bound traffic at all times, will be open for Manhattan-bound cars and buses from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., and for Brooklyn-bound cars and buses from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. The expanded travel option will be available in one lane of the eastern tube, while the other lane will remain dedicated for express buses. The western tube remains closed for extensive repairs by Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Bridges and Tunnels.
"While crews continue to work around the clock to repair the extensive damage that Hurricane Sandy inflicted on the Carey Tunnel, we must do everything we can to reduce inconveniences for our commuters driving in and out of Manhattan," Governor Cuomo said. "With the reopening of a lane in the Carey Tunnel to traffic, we are taking another step toward restoring normalcy to the daily commute."
The Carey Tunnel was flooded with an estimated 43 million gallons of corrosive, debris-laden seawater in each of its two tubes, causing wide-ranging damage to the tunnels electrical, lighting, communications, surveillance and ventilation systems. The Carey Tunnel is the longest vehicular under-river crossing in North America, and water flooded more than a mile of its 9,000-foot length.
No trucks will be allowed in the eastern tube as work continues, and no timetable has been established for resuming traffic in the western tube, which suffered heavier damage.
"Bringing cars back into the Carey Tunnel is a big accomplishment for the MTA Bridges and Tunnels employees who have worked tirelessly to recover, and its an equally big step forward for the commuters who rely on the tunnel," said MTA Chairman and CEO Joseph J. Lhota. "Each step forward for the MTA is most importantly a step forward for its customers."