MANHATTAN (CBSNewYork) — The Second Avenue Subway has been a project in the making for decades — and now the MTA says it’s on schedule to finish Phase 1 by next year.

The MTA Capital Construction President Dr. Michael Horodniceanu gave CBS2’s Andrea Grymes a tour of the underground construction below street level on the Upper East Side.

Phase 1 will extend the “Q” train from 57th Street and 7th Avenue across town to 96th Street and 2nd Avenue. Once the entire project is done, the “Q” train will run up to 125th Street and a new “T” train will run from 125th to Hanover Square downtown.

The project will help alleviate congestion on the nearby Lexington Avenue line.

“We have to marry brand new technology with technology that may not be exactly at the same pace,” said Horodniceanu.

Workers have to lay about four miles of track, and so far they are about 40 percent complete. The MTA says these tracks are designed to last longer and help lower noise levels.

For those who live and work in the area, the construction cannot end soon enough.

The owner of Dorrian’s, a neighborhood mainstay on 2nd and 84th Street, says the only reason they’ve managed to stay open is because he owns the building.

“They’ve got construction going on, dust comes in the windows, you can’t take out the windows,” Jack Dorrian said. “It’s been a disaster.”

The MTA says it thinks neighborhood sentiment has shifted and the people now believe the project will actually be completed.

Phase 1 is set to be completed in December 2016. There is no time table yet for the completion of Phase 2.