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Shuttle Bus Service Provided between Freeport & Babylon this Weekend -; April 9-10

LIRR Modernization Project Brings State of the Art Signal Technology to Critical Switching Areas at Amityville and Wantagh

Buses replace trains between Freeport and Babylon this weekend (April 9-10), as the MTA Long Island Rail Road completes work on a major signal modernization project between Amityville and Wantagh. Babylon Branch customers can avoid buses by taking LIRR train service on alternate unaffected LIRR branches.

The Amityville-Wantagh Signal Improvement Project replaces the signal system with at these two important switching locations with new modern microprocessor-based technology. The new system will increase service reliability for trains on the LIRR's busiest branch.

Saturday & Sunday, April 9-10

  • No train service between Babylon & Freeport
  • Shuttle Buses will provide alternate service
  • Special Weekend Timetables in effect for Babylon & Montauk branches
  • Allow 30 Minutes Extra Travel Time
  • To Avoid Busing, use Main Line, North Shore Branches


Here is what will be happening:

Babylon/Montauk Branch Weekend of April 9-10

Customer Impacts
Shuttle buses will replace trains between Freeport and Babylon on the weekend of April 9-10 as the LIRR completes a major signal modernization project on a 14-mile stretch of track. The work will require a 42-hour suspension of train service starting at 4 AM Saturday,
April 9 and continuing through 10 PM Sunday, April 10. During the weekend, buses will shuttle Babylon/Montauk Branch customers along Sunrise Highway between Freeport and Babylon. Customers should anticipate and plan for an additional 30 minutes of travel time.

Benefits: Replacing the signal system between Amityville and Wantagh with new microprocessor-based technology will result in more reliable train service for customers.

Community Impacts: There may be some additional noise associated with the shuttle bus operation, especially at the Babylon and Freeport Stations, where buses will begin/end their runs. The buses will also take up some parking spaces at these stations.

Summary of Changes Weekend of April 9-10
Babylon Branch:

Eastbound: Babylon Branch customers will have regularly scheduled weekend train service to Freeport. Those traveling further east will transfer to shuttle buses for service to stations Merrick through Babylon.

Westbound: Babylon Branch customers at stations Babylon through Merrick will board shuttle buses to Freeport, then transfer for train service to points west.

To Avoid Busing - Use Unaffected Stations/Branches
Babylon Branch customers who normally use stations between Babylon and Freeport can avoid the substitute bus service on the weekend of April 9-10 by taking LIRR train service to/from alternate stations such as Freeport, Hicksville, Farmingdale, Bethpage, Wyandanch and Deer Park. LIRR train service at these stations will be operating normally on the weekend of April 9-10.


Montauk Branch:

Eastbound: Connections for trains to Patchogue and Speonk will depart Penn Station & Atlantic Terminal 30 minutes earlier than usual. At Freeport, an express bus will bring customers to Babylon, where customers can connect with trains to points east.

Westbound: trains from Speonk and Patchogue will terminate at Babylon. Customers will be provided with buses from Babylon to Freeport, where they can pick up regularly scheduled train service going to New York.

East of Speonk: Train service not affected.

To Avoid Busing - Use Unaffected Trains/Stations
Montauk Branch customers can avoid busing by taking one of nine eastbound & nine westbound trains that operate on the Main Line via the Central Branch. These trains are highlighted in the special April 9-10 Montauk Branch weekend timetable. Montauk Branch customers can also avoid busing by taking LIRR train service to/from alternate stations such as Ronkonkoma, Central Islip and Brentwood. LIRR train service at these stations will be operating normally on the weekend of April 9-10.

Babylon Branch Timetables April 9 & 10, 2011
Montauk Branch Timetables April 9 & 10, 2011

System Map Depicting Affected Stations and Alternate Service Options (click to enlarge)

System Map Depicting Affected Stations and Alternate Service Options

Plan Ahead
For Babylon Branch customers who wish to avoid busing during the weekend of April 9-10, we recommend driving to alternate LIRR stations where train service will operate normally. Here are some possible alternatives:

  • Merrick and Bellmore customers: Drive to Freeport for direct train service to NY. There is adequate weekend parking and no weekend parking fees or restrictions. These stations are all in Fare Zone 7.
  • Wantagh, Seaford, Massapequa and Massapequa Park customers: For direct train service to NY, drive to Bethpage or Hicksville, where parking is available and restrictions are waived on weekends. These stations are all in Fare Zone 7.
  • Amityville, Copiague and Lindenhurst (Fare Zone 9) customers: Drive to Wyandanch (Fare Zone 9) or Farmingdale (Fare Zone 7), where parking is available and restrictions are waived on weekends.
  • Babylon & Bay Shore customers: Drive to Deer Park (Fare Zone 9), where weekend parking is available with no restrictions or fees.
  • Islip - Speonk customers: Drive to Brentwood, Central Islip or Ronkonkoma (Fare Zone 10), where there's plenty of free weekend parking, with no residency requirements.

Please pick up a copy of the special April 9-10 Babylon and Montauk Branch weekend timetables. For the most up-to-date information throughout the weekend, sign up for LIRR E-alerts and text messages.


Travel Tips

  • Please pick up a copy of the special April 9-10 Babylon and Montauk Branch weekend timetables
  • Allow 30 minutes of additional travel time
  • Consider traveling to/from unaffected stations (details inside)
  • Consider taking the Ronkonkoma Branch
  • Buy LIRR tickets in advance (as of December 30, 2010 one-way and round-trip tickets are valid for 14 days from date of purchase)
  • Listen for announcements
  • Leave bicycles at home. Bicycles will not be permitted on buses
  • Look for LIRR personnel at key locations
  • Monitor radio and TV traffic reports for updates
  • Sign up for Customer E-Mail Alerts

Mets Fans: To avoid busing on the weekend of April 9-10, use unaffected stations, including stations on the Port Washington, Port Jefferson or Ronkonkoma Branches.

We thank you for your patience and understanding as we work to complete these infrastructure improvements in the shortest time frame possible.

We urge you to plan ahead by reviewing this website, picking up special weekend timetables, or calling 718-217-5477 (718-217-LIRR).