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L train tunnel repairs already over budget and behind schedule

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The MTA has yet to pick a contractor for the project

The MTA’s L train tunnel repair project is officially both over budget and behind schedule, suggesting that it is indeed an MTA project.

According to DNAInfo, the project is now expected to cost $16 million more than previous estimates — a drop in the bucket, really, given the total price tag. The price bump for the repairs, which will shut down L train service between Brooklyn and Manhattan for 18 months starting in 2019, brings the total cost to $899.6 million, up from more optimistic estimates of $883.3 million. The reason? An “updated assessment from an engineer,” according to agency docs.

Meanwhile, the project timeline has stalled because the agency has yet to pick a contractor for the job putting the project three months behind schedule. The original plan was to have that set by the end of 2016, but January board documents said the MTA wouldn’t finish the selection process until March, due to a “protracted procurement process.”

Still, the MTA says the delays won’t change the actual construction plans: work on the tunnel is still expected to kick off at the beginning of 2019, per the original timeline. In the meantime, the agency is still working with the DOT to finalize alternative plans for getting L train riders into and out of Manhattan.