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L train construction already taking its toll on one neighborhood

LOWER EAST SIDE, Manhattan -- Ask anyone navigating around the construction on 14th between First Avenue and Avenue A and you will get the same response.

“It’s very disgusting when it rains around here and the noise is bad,” said one neighbor.

“Sometimes it goes on late at night,” said another neighbor. “So it’s pretty late, and some of the construction workers during the day are kind of rude, and loud and stuff like that.”

The noise and dirt related to repairs to the L train are only going to intensify early next year. The line will shut down for 15 months for a major overhaul.

“There’s been no sidewalk traffic,” said Leonidias Keithis, who has managed the Lower East Side Coffee Shop and Dinner for four years. Being right next to the construction, the shop’s entrance is almost completely hidden, and the dining environment is not that pleasant.

Keithis said he is honestly not sure there will be a fifth year at this location.

“I doubt it,” sighed Keithis.

Most neighbors do seem to know the work is necessary, but that doesn’t make it any easier.

“I guess it’s best for the neighborhood,” said one neighbor. “They’re trying to fix everything up around here, but it’s just taking a long time.”