Errol Louis discussed the new L train design plan that aims avert a full shutdown, with two leading experts who were part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's team that came up with the recommendations: Mary Boyce, the Dean of the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science at Columbia University, and Lance Collins, the Joseph Silbert Dean of Engineering at Cornell University. They discussed:

  • Who was on the team that came up with the plan to prevent a full shutdown of the L train between Brooklyn and Manhattan.
  • Their qualifications despite, as they say, not being transportation experts.
  • The original shutdown plan, a process which Collins said wasn't missing anything that prevented the MTA from reaching the conclusion that Cuomo's team had reached.
  • What Cuomo's team gathered from the MTA's original plan. They say elements of that proposal opened the door to a different approach.
  • Why cables in subway tunnels in modern systems are no longer encased in the tunnel walls, but instead racked outside.
  • How much protection the cables in the L train tunnel would have from vandals, trains, or fires if they are not encased inside the tunnel walls.
  • Their argument that the plan didn't need more review or tests on other city subway systems because the designs were based on rail tunnels in Hong Kong, London, and Riyadh.


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