G trains Roll Between Greenpoint and Long Island City After Five-Week Absence

G Subway Line service was restored on Tuesday, September 2 in time for the post Labor Day morning rush. The five-week suspension between Court Sq and Nassau Av began July 25 and gave MTA New York City Transit maintenance crews the opportunity to make Fix&Fortify resiliency repairs to the tubes, flooded and badly damaged during Superstorm Sandy nearly two years ago.
MTA Chairman & CEO Thomas F. Prendergast and NYC Transit Carmen Bianco were on hand at Greenpoint Av to greet customers as they returned to their normal travel routines.  
“The storm’s devastating impact on our Subway network posed an enormous challenge which we continue to meet while working daily to rebuild and improve the system,” said Bianco. “Transit personnel from throughout the agency demonstrated an extremely high level of dedication in rebuilding the Greenpoint Tubes and their work is deeply appreciated.”
While service was suspended, the Department of Buses operated a shuttle service that ferried thousands of customers daily between Long Island City and Greenpoint. Meanwhile, crews from every major division of the Department of Subways worked on installing communication lines, laying new track and third rail, repositioning signals, rebuilding tunnel infrastructure and performing rehabilitation work on adjacent stations.  
“The timely resumption of G service and the infrastructure repairs completed during the shutdown is a testament to our team’s hard work,” said Joe Leader, Senior Vice President Department of Subways. “I thank each and every one of the hundreds of employees who worked so hard over the past five weeks to get the job done.”
The tubes suffered extensive damage during Superstorm Sandy as three million gallons of salt water washed into the tunnel, filling it to the ceiling.  Tracks and equipment were totally submerged and the tunnels’ pump controls, electrical, communications, fan control and signal equipment all suffered serious damage.  Power cables immersed in salt water corroded from the inside, while corrosion on rails and fasteners increased the potential for delay-causing failures.  
The controls for ventilation, lighting and communication systems were all destroyed and have yet to be restored to their full level of pre-Sandy reliability.  In Sandy’s immediate aftermath NYC Transit and agency contractors worked tirelessly to restore service as quickly as possible after the storm.  However, we immediately realized that more extensive work would be necessary to repair and rebuild these vital systems in order to ensure safe and reliable service.
Fix&Fortify work to return these and other components to pre-Sandy condition, while providing for improved resiliency and reliability, touched every aspect of the tunnel and its operations. Among the work completed prior to this morning’s restoration of service: 
Installed about 128,000 feet of cable and wire, including: 
Resilient optical fiber cable includ­ing for pump and fan controls
Antennae cable
Communication cable
Removed about 27,000 feet of cables and wire 
Supported relocation of five vulnerable signal locations and restoration of eight signal heads
Furnished, installed and replaced signal equipment at the Signal Power Room at the 54th Street shaft
Installed 17 new emergency alarms and telephones with diverse routing for improved reliability and survivability 
Installed 44 new, sound-powered telephone jacks
Integrated fiber optic cable replacement using the new resiliency design
Implemented new radio antennae system and moved passive devices off the right of way and into com­munications rooms 
Installed all new tunnel lighting and power receptacles between Greenpoint Av and 21st Street – Van Alst Stations
Installed almost 9,000 feet of new conduit 
Completed over 2,500 feet of struc­tural repairs
Replaced about 970 feet of ducts
Performed water remediation at over 50 locations
At least 82 RTO personnel provid­ed construction flagging support
In total, provided over 4,000 hours of construction flagging support
At least 264 RTO personnel sup­ported worktrain operation
In total, provided over 28,100 hours of worktrain operation sup­port
At least 602 manifested worktrains deployed
Scraped and painted about 43,600 square feet at 21st Street - Van Alst
Completed total rehabilitation of 14 stairways at 21 St - Van Alst
Scraped and painted 52,700 square feet at Greenpoint Avenue
Completed total rehabilitation of 14 stairways at Greenpoint Avenue
Third Rail
Replaced 0ver 1,000 insulators
Performed 9,000 feet of shimming
Cleaned 9,000 feet of third rail
Replaced positive gap cables at 14 locations
Installed over 14,000 feet of con­tinuous welded rails (CWRs)
Installed over 10,000 RF plates
Performed 46 welds
Cleaned 9,000 feet of roadbed
Provided over 28,100 hours of work train operation support
602 work trains deployed
During the work, resiliency program management were faced with the herculean challenge of scheduling and coordinating all the various work crews to ensure that not only did the work plan get completed, but that it was done so in as safe a manner as possible.
Sandy’s damage to the subway system was historic. The Fix&Fortify project is designed to restore and rebuild damaged infrastructure and the delicate equipment that was submerged, while reducing the system’s vulnerability in the event of future severe weather. Overall, the MTA has been allocated nearly $3.8 billion in funding from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) for repair, resiliency, and disaster relief work.  
In addition to the work inside the Greenpoint Tubes, the MTA’s Fix&Fortify campaign will also address issues in other under river tubes to make the system more resilient. Planning and design work is also underway for flood mitigation at NYC Transit facilities in low-lying areas of Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens as well as similar flood prevention and mitigation work at the entrances to several stations in Lower Manhattan. 
To see before and after photos of the Greenpoint Tube following this recent five week Fix&Fortify closure click here: