Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Chairman and CEO Thomas F. Prendergast and MTA Metro-North Railroad President Howard Permut today announced the railroad will offer a limited amount of additional rail service to accommodate half its normal New Haven Line weekday ridership in time for the Monday morning rush. While trains are expected to be crowded and customers are urged not to travel during the busiest part of rush hour, thousands of park-and-ride spaces in Westchester County and the Bronx will allow customers to ride other MTA services into Manhattan.
“Con Edison’s temporary substation allows us to run very limited electric trains through this critical section of the New Haven Line for the first time since power was disrupted last week, but it’s still far less than the normal service our customers expect,” Prendergast said. “While Con Edison works to restore full power to their damaged feeder cable, the MTA is doing everything it can to accommodate New Haven Line customers on other services.”
The new schedule, available at mta.info/mnr, is constrained by the power supply available to the eight-mile section between Harrison and Mount Vernon, which can only accommodate two electric trains at one time under very limited loads. Electric trains draw the most power when starting, so they will only operate express through that eight-mile section. About 20 percent of normal New Haven Line rush-hour service will be provided by electric trains, in addition to the 30 percent provided by diesel trains borrowed from other Metro-North lines.
“This service plan will remain in effect until Con Edison is able to provide full power through the Mount Vernon feeder to the New Haven Line,” Permut said. “They now expect to complete their repairs by Oct. 7, with the goal of giving Metro-North time to complete required testing and restore full train service by Oct. 8. Until then, we thank our customers for their patience and flexibility during this disruption.”
Metro-North will offer 8,600 free park-and-ride spaces that will connect with other MTA services with cooperation from Westchester County Executive Robert P. Astorino, the New York State Department of Transportation, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation and local police forces throughout the region. New Haven Line tickets will be cross-honored on those services.
“The disruption of service on the New Haven Line has caused tremendous inconvenience to thousands of Westchester commuters,” Astorino said. “I reached out to Metro-North to offer our assistance and help provide an alternative to New Haven Line commuters.”
The following locations will open at 4:30 a.m. each morning to accommodate park-and-ride customers, and up to 72 shuttle buses provided by MTA New York City Transit and MTA Bus Company will begin operating at 5 a.m. Metro-North employees will be available at each location to provide information and assistance:
- Orchard Beach – 5,000 parking spaces, with a free shuttle bus to MTA New York City Transit’s Pelham Bay Park station on the subway line.
- 8 E. 153rd St. Garage (Yankee Stadium) – 1,500 parking spaces, a short walk to Metro-North’s Yankees-E 153 St station and the 161 St station on the , and subway lines.
- Rye Playland – 1,500 parking spaces, with a free shuttle bus to the White Plains station on the Metro-North Harlem Line.
- Kensico Dam, 600 Park Drive West, Valhalla – 600 parking spaces, with a free shuttle bus to the North White Plains station on the Harlem Line, and walking distance to the Valhalla Station on the Harlem Line.
Customers can also choose to go to other stations on the Harlem and Hudson lines, which will cross-honor New Haven Line tickets. The Hudson Line has more capacity available, while the Harlem Line is expected to be very crowded despite the addition of cars to some trains. Parking is limited at those stations, and Metro-North recommends customers arrange car pools or “kiss and ride” drop-offs.
Metro-North urges its monthly and weekly ticket holders to retain tickets used during the service disruption while the railroad considers the possibility of reimbursement.
Customers are advised to leave additional travel time, and use trains that arrive in Grand Central after 9:30 a.m., after the morning peak period. Those who can stay home or telecommute during this service disruption are urged to do so. Contact 511 (1-877-690-5114 outside NYS) for further assistance.