New York subway expansion to forgo use of sidewalk grates

Oct. 1, 2013 at 5:13 PM

NEW YORK, Oct. 1 (UPI) -- New York transportation officials said new expansion of the city's subway, set to debut in 2016, will not use the famed sidewalk grates for ventilation.

Michael Horodniceanu, the president of capital construction for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, said the Second Avenue subway, the first expansion of the underground train system in more than 50 years, will use air pumps with mechanical ventilating towers near stations instead of having air blow out through grates in the sidewalk above, The New York Times reported Tuesday.

"No more heel problems," Horodniceanu said.

The grates are famous for breaking high-heeled shoes and becoming a graveyard for lost keys and rings. A city grate was also featured in an iconic scene of 1954's "The Seven Year Itch," when it raised a skirt worn by Marilyn Monroe.

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