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Press Release
October 26, 2017
IMMEDIATE
Double Track Work Oct. 28-29 to Improve Reliability on Ronkonkoma Branch
Buses to Substitute for Train Service for Pinelawn, Wyandanch, Deer Park, Brentwood, Central Islip and Ronkonkoma Customers; Greenport Times Altered; Also, Added Trains for Concerts at Barclays Center

Long Island Rail Road crews will perform work to benefit the progress of the Double Track project on the Ronkonkoma Branch the weekend of Oct. 28-29. This work will affect train service on the Ronkonkoma Branch, where customers will board buses for service to and from stations at Pinelawn, Wyandanch, Deer Park, Brentwood, Central Islip, and Ronkonkoma.

Westbound customers traveling from those stations will board a bus up to 44 minutes earlier than normal train times to Hicksville, where they will transfer to a westbound train. Eastbound customers traveling to those stations will board a bus at Hicksville to their destination and should allow up to 44 minutes additional travel time. Busing will begin at 12:48 a.m. Saturday morning and continue through 12:46 a.m. Monday.

Eastbound customers traveling to Bethpage and Farmingdale will remain on the train to their destinations. Westbound customers can board trains at Bethpage and Farmingdale.

Work on this weekend is scheduled to include a crossing renewal at Wellwood Avenue in Farmingdale; a signal hut relocation at Straight Path and 18th Street in Wyandanch; and a switch installation in an LIRR industrial area in Deer Park.

The Double Track Project will improve service and reliability on the LIRR’s Ronkonkoma Branch, while spurring economic activity, providing hundreds of construction jobs and improving LIRR service to Long Island MacArthur Airport. Over the past 25 years, ridership on the Ronkonkoma Branch has doubled -- growing in popularity since the line was electrified in 1988 – indicating the need for expansion.

The project will also aid in reducing delays in the event of a service disruption, as the 18-mile stretch between Ronkonkoma and Farmingdale currently only has one track available to both directions of train traffic. When an issue arises with a train, this stalls all other east and westbound trains because there is currently no way to circumnavigate the stalled train.

Service changes are as follows:

Westbound

  • Customers at stations from Ronkonkoma through Pinelawn will board buses to Hicksville up to 44 minutes earlier than normal trains, then transfer to westbound trains.
  • The 10:05 a.m., 11:05 a.m., and 12:05 p.m. trains from Ronkonkoma are canceled.
  • Customers at stations Farmingdale and Bethpage will board westbound trains.
  • Greenport customers will board buses at Ronkonkoma for service to Hicksville, where train service will resume, or board local buses for Central Islip through Bethpage Stations.

Eastbound

  • Customers traveling to stations Pinelawn through Ronkonkoma will transfer to buses at Hicksville. Plan for 44 minutes of added travel time.
  • The 4:39 p.m., 5:39 p.m. and 6:39 p.m. weekend trains from Penn Station are canceled.
  • Customers traveling to Bethpage and Farmingdale should stay on the train to their stations.
  • Greenport customers will board the 8:12 a.m. or 1:12 p.m. trains from Penn Station to Hicksville, one hour earlier than normal. Customers will then connect with buses to Ronkonkoma where train service will resume.

Motorists

A variety of projects related to the Double Track initiative will also take place the weekend of Oct. 28-29, which will affect vehicular traffic patterns.

Wellwood Avenue in Farmingdale – Crossing Renewal

  • This road will be fully closed while the crossing is installed from Friday, Oct. 27 at 11:59 p.m. through Sunday, Oct. 29 at 11:59 p.m. Work will run continuously through each night. Temporary pavement will be installed at the grade crossing before the road is reopened to traffic.

Vehicular Detours:

  • Southbound: Proceed south on Wellwood Avenue to Central Avenue make a right and proceed west to New Highway. Make a left and proceed south to Conklin St.  Make a left and proceed east to Wellwood Avenue.
  • Northbound: Proceed north on Wellwood Avenue to Conklin Street, make a left and proceed west to New Highway.  Make a right and proceed north to Central Avenue. Proceed east on Central Avenue to Wellwood Avenue.

Straight Path and 18th Street in Wyandanch – Signal Hut Relocation

  • LIRR will be relocating signal equipment at Straight Path and 18th Street on Saturday October 28. During this time, periodic single lane closures may be implemented while equipment is moved. The relocation should be complete by 3:00 PM on Saturday. LIRR crews will continue to test the signal equipment at these two crossings through Sunday, October 29, during which time the crossing gates may be activated sporadically.
  • Work will take place from Saturday, October 28, 4:00AM through Sunday, October 29, 8:00PM.  
  • No traffic detours or overnight work will be required for this effort.

LIRR Industrial Area in Deer Park - Switch Installation

  • Switch installation work will be done on LIRR property in our Industrial Area behind Tanger Outlets (between Grand Blvd. and Commack Rd.) in Deer Park.
  • Work will take place from Saturday, October 27, 11:59 PM. through Sunday, October 29, 11:59PM and run continuously through the night.
  • No traffic detours or overnight work will be required for this effort.

Added Trains to Barclays This Weekend For Concerts

Separately, extra train service will be added from Barclays Center following the Tim McGraw and Faith Hill concert on Friday, Oct. 27. Extra trains will be added on Saturday, Oct. 28 to and from the Barclays Center for the Fall Out Boy concert.

Friday, Oct. 27 – Post-Concert Eastbound Trains to Depart Approx. 20 Minutes After the End of the Tim McGraw/Faith Hill Event

  • Two extra eastbound trains will operate between Atlantic Terminal and Babylon, stopping at Jamaica, Rockville Centre and all stops to Babylon.
  • One extra eastbound train from Atlantic Terminal to Farmingdale, stopping at Jamaica, New Hyde Park, then all stops to Farmingdale.
  • One extra eastbound train from Atlantic Terminal to Farmingdale, stopping at Jamaica, Mineola, Hicksville, then all stops to Farmingdale.
  • In the event of high-demand, two shuttles will run from Atlantic Terminal to Jamaica, stopping at Jamaica only.

Saturday, Oct. 28 – Pre-Concert Westbound Trains For Fall Out Boy Starting at 7 p.m.

  • Two extra westbound trains from Babylon, making all stops to Rockville Centre, then Jamaica, then Atlantic Terminal.
  • One extra westbound train from Farmingdale, making all stops to New Hyde Park, then Jamaica, then Atlantic Terminal.
  • One extra westbound train from Farmingdale making all stops to Hicksville, then Mineola, Jamaica and Atlantic Terminal.                                        

Saturday, Oct. 28 – Post-Concert Eastbound Trains to Depart Approx. 20 Minutes After the End of the Fall Out Boy Event

  • Two extra eastbound trains from Atlantic Terminal to Babylon, stopping at Jamaica, Rockville Centre, and all stops to Babylon.
  • One extra eastbound train from Atlantic Terminal to Farmingdale, stopping at Jamaica, New Hyde Park, then all stops to Farmingdale.
  • One extra eastbound train from Atlantic Terminal to Farmingdale, stopping at Jamaica, Mineola, Hicksville, then all stops to Farmingdale.
  • In the event of high-demand, two shuttles will run from Atlantic Terminal to Jamaica only.

Many Channels for Services Updates

Information about the additional service noted in this press release and all planned service changes is available through the LIRR’s real-time service information sources:

Email and text message service updates – Customers are urged to sign up to receive the alerts by visiting MyMTAAlerts.com. To avoid unwanted messages, a user can tailor the messages to the specific branch, and the specific times of day.

LIRR Train Time app – Customers who use the LIRR Train Time app will see up-to-the-minute status for each upcoming train at each station. As a caution, trains that start out their trips on time may experience delays en route.

MTA.info – The rail tab of the “Service Status” box at the left side of www.MTA.info is always the definitive source for the latest status for each branch, updated every minute. In addition, customers can visit www.mta.info/lirr to see special service notices in the upper center of the page.

@LIRR on Twitter – Twitter users can follow @LIRR to receive updates of a similar nature to the email and text alerts, shortened to fit Twitter’s format.

The above communications channels can be accessed while at home or on the go. For customers who are located at stations, the LIRR will post the latest service updates on digital signs at station platforms and will make audio announcements over public address systems, and on-board announcements made by train crews.

For those who prefer the telephone, information is available from the LIRR’s Customer Service Center by calling 511, the New York State Travel Information Line, and saying: “Long Island Rail Road” Those who are deaf or hard of hearing can use their preferred service provider for the free 711 relay to reach the LIRR at 511.