Commuters survived the “summer of hell” Amtrak repairs at New York’s Penn Station, but are they headed for a winter of discontent as the agency announced Phase II of its infrastructure renewal work at the nation’s busiest rail hub?
“After a successful summer, it is essential that we continue to upgrade the infrastructure so that we can continue to improve the reliability of service for all customers that use New York Penn Station,” Amtrak co-CEO Wick Moorman said in a statement Monday.
While most of 2018’s work at Penn Station will take place on weekends, single-track weekday closures will occur starting Jan. 5 and continue through May 28.
As a result, passengers can expect what Amtrak calls “minor modifications” to Amtrak, Long Island Rail Road and New Jersey Transit service — though the three agencies are working together to ensure there is a minimum impact on the thousands of passengers who funnel through Penn Station daily.
The work will take place in the vicinity of Track 15, which will include the demolition and replacement of concrete, and Track 18, which will involve localized concrete demolition, the replacement of steel hardware and rail renewal. Additionally, three turnouts, or switches, in the east end of the station, will also be renewed and replaced.
What to expect on your commute for Amtrak’s winter work at Penn Station (so far)
The LIRR has not yet announced its service changes, but President Patrick Nowakowski told the New York Daily News “it will be much more than we experienced this fall, it will not be as much as we experienced last summer.”
NJ Transit is already warning passengers to “prepare for delays and crowded conditions” when its service adjustments begin on Monday, Jan. 8.
Riders can expect modified day and night schedules on the Northeast Corridor and North Jersey Coast Line, including skipped stops, adjusted departure and arrival times and cancellations.
For the complete modified schedule, visit njtransit.com.
• For the duration of the January-May work, Amtrak will cancel Northeast Regional Trains 110 from Washington, D.C. (WAS) and 127 from Penn to WAS.
• Northbound Keystone Train 640 will terminate at Newark Penn Station, while Train 643 will originate at Newark Penn Station.
• Southbound Train 173 will stop at Newark Airport
• Southbound Trains 129, 193 and 653 will have earlier departures
• Train 170 will depart WAS early, stop at North Philadelphia and Cornwells Heights before resuming its normal schedule from Trenton