MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdale

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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MattAmity90 » Tue Sep 13, 2016 8:46 pm

On the weekend of October 1-2nd, the Ocean Avenue grade crossing will be closed for 52 hours for the installation of a new grade crossing. This means that the second track will be added and go through the crossing, turning the grade crossing into a 2 track from a 1 track.

Also the FRA gave money to the LIRR to improve safety at several LIRR crossings, which couldn't have come at absolute best time. I'm not going to say all the grade crossings, but the ones that are key along the Ronkonkoma Branch are going in order from Hicksville to Ronkonkoma:

1.) Stewart Avenue in Bethpage.
2.) Straight Path in Wyandanch.
3.) Commack Road in Deer Park.
4.) Executive Drive in Deer Park.
5.) Islip Avenue in Central Islip.

I would like to see the following improvements:

1.) Ocean Avenue with center median signals.
2.) Hopefully the Straight Path and Executive Drive projects include converting them into 4-quadrant gated crossings.
3.) Several grade crossings with island signals.
4.) Pedestrian bridge at Bethpage.
5.) Convert the old Deer Park station into an employee only stop with two high-level platforms two cars long.

Have they also cleared any of the brush or doing something for the rest of the way in between Central Islip and Brentwood? (just East of Brentwood station)
This station is Babylon, this is the train to Penn Station. Stopping at: Lindenhurst, Copiague, Amityville, Massapequa Park, Massapequa, Seaford, Wantagh, Bellmore, Merrick, Freeport, Baldwin, Rockville Centre, Lynbrook, Valley Stream, Jamaica, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Woodside, Penn Station.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MattAmity90 » Sat Sep 24, 2016 3:04 pm

Turns out in addition to the October 1st-2nd weekend, right now this weekend September 24th-25th there is no train service between Ronkonkoma and Farmingdale due to the project.

Train service will be available to and from Bethpage and Farmingdale until 4 PM Sunday. They are replacing some of the switches I think at BETH Interlocking. Either way trains will terminate and originate at Farmingdale (until 4 PM on Sunday), and Hicksville.

I saw in a video that the track between Ronkonkoma and Central Islip has been laid, and that a switch (probably temporary) was installed that connects the existing track to the new one probably for railroad vehicles to level and the track and ballast.
This station is Babylon, this is the train to Penn Station. Stopping at: Lindenhurst, Copiague, Amityville, Massapequa Park, Massapequa, Seaford, Wantagh, Bellmore, Merrick, Freeport, Baldwin, Rockville Centre, Lynbrook, Valley Stream, Jamaica, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Woodside, Penn Station.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MattAmity90 » Wed Oct 05, 2016 1:04 am

As I mentioned before, on the weekend of October 1st-2nd there would be no train service East of Farmingdale due to ongoing double track project construction. Here's one of the results:

14479544_941000459338900_6130786907632766053_n.jpg
Ocean Avenue has been transformed from a 1 track to a 2 track crossing. Looking North, and no the tracks have not been connected yet.
This station is Babylon, this is the train to Penn Station. Stopping at: Lindenhurst, Copiague, Amityville, Massapequa Park, Massapequa, Seaford, Wantagh, Bellmore, Merrick, Freeport, Baldwin, Rockville Centre, Lynbrook, Valley Stream, Jamaica, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Woodside, Penn Station.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby LB » Wed Oct 05, 2016 6:21 pm

When do they plan to begin operation of the Ronkonkoma to Central Islip section? Is it being held up until the entire Farmingdale to Ronkonkoma job is complete?
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MattAmity90 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 1:01 am

LB wrote:When do they plan to begin operation of the Ronkonkoma to Central Islip section? Is it being held up until the entire Farmingdale to Ronkonkoma job is complete?


I have no idea, but I've got a lot of people saying that brush and ballast trucks are parked at the old Deer Park station/Rt. 231 trestle clearing the ROW on the South side and that soil is being moved in between the existing track and Long Island Avenue along Pinelawn cemetery. Straight Path I heard was converted into a 2-track crossing as well. These are the crossings along the branch when and if they are 2 tracks in parentheses is when they did:

1.) Pond Road (earlier this year)
2.) Ocean Avenue (this past weekend)
3.) Lowell Avenue (when the branch was electrified)
4.) Carleton Avenue (few weeks ago)
5.) Peter's Boulevard (months ago)
6.) Islip Avenue (??)
7.) All 4 Brentwood crossings and the Executive Drive crossing in Deer Park were converted when the branch was electrified.
8.) Commack Road (always has been, although one track is a siding)
9.) Carll's Path (always been, one track is a siding)
10.) Straight Path (past month)
11.) 18th Street (one is a siding)
12.) Little East Neck Road (??)
13.) Wellwood Avenue (nothing yet)
14.) New Highway (one is a siding)
All crossings West of New Highway have always been 2 tracks.

Either way, I do hope that the double track portion when completed from Ronkonkoma to Central Islip will be in service while Phase II is in the works. Won't take long to lay down a track with the NTC, it only took 72 hours to lay 4 miles of it down!
This station is Babylon, this is the train to Penn Station. Stopping at: Lindenhurst, Copiague, Amityville, Massapequa Park, Massapequa, Seaford, Wantagh, Bellmore, Merrick, Freeport, Baldwin, Rockville Centre, Lynbrook, Valley Stream, Jamaica, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Woodside, Penn Station.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby Amtrak7 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:49 am

There are no more weekend outages planned for the rest of this year.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby tj48 » Fri Oct 14, 2016 8:12 pm

Traveled east along Long Island Ave. from Wellwood Road to Deer Park Ave.
The second track ROW has been graded from Pinelawn Station to Little East Neck Road.
Construction crews were working from Little East Neck Road to 18th Street in Wyandanch grading the new ROW.
Other than the tree and shrub removal the section from Straight Path to the Deer Park Ave overpass hasn't seen any additional work.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MattAmity90 » Fri Oct 14, 2016 11:42 pm

Is Straight Path now a 2-track crossing?
This station is Babylon, this is the train to Penn Station. Stopping at: Lindenhurst, Copiague, Amityville, Massapequa Park, Massapequa, Seaford, Wantagh, Bellmore, Merrick, Freeport, Baldwin, Rockville Centre, Lynbrook, Valley Stream, Jamaica, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Woodside, Penn Station.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MattAmity90 » Mon Oct 17, 2016 10:57 pm

After looking through my Flickr account at the people I follow, one of the guys I follow took several photos of the ROW on the Ronkonkoma Branch after the second track was laid. Here's what is happening now:

1.) Ballast is now being poured to cover the ties.
2.) The rest of the trees and brush have been cleared in between Central Islip and Brentwood leading into Brentwood station. Shouldn't be an issue to lay the track.
3.) Work is continuing on clearing foliage leading into the old Deer Park station.
4.) Wyandanch now has a clear path in the vicinity of the station.
5.) Brush and foliage is being cleared in between Wyandanch to Pinelawn.
6.) Finally, they have erected a safety fence in between Long Island Avenue and the track in between Pinelawn station to the Little East Neck Road crossing, with of course people telling me that they are grading the Earth. The fence is erected in between the LI Avenue and the power lines.
7.) The section from Wellwood Avenue to where the East end of FARM Interlocking has yet to see any evidence.
This station is Babylon, this is the train to Penn Station. Stopping at: Lindenhurst, Copiague, Amityville, Massapequa Park, Massapequa, Seaford, Wantagh, Bellmore, Merrick, Freeport, Baldwin, Rockville Centre, Lynbrook, Valley Stream, Jamaica, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Woodside, Penn Station.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MACTRAXX » Tue Oct 18, 2016 6:12 pm

LB wrote:When do they plan to begin operation of the Ronkonkoma to Central Islip section? Is it being held up until the entire Farmingdale to Ronkonkoma job is complete?


LB: At this time (10/2016) the Ronkonkoma-Central Islip track segment has no third rail yet installed as of now.

I believe that the idea is to place this second track in service as soon as any additional track and grade crossing work is complete.

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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MattAmity90 » Tue Oct 18, 2016 11:53 pm

So what you are saying is that as soon as the second track track between Ronkonkoma and Central Islip is complete (both crossings are now two track) that will immediately go into service, while the rest of the project from West of Central Islip to Farmingdale continues?
This station is Babylon, this is the train to Penn Station. Stopping at: Lindenhurst, Copiague, Amityville, Massapequa Park, Massapequa, Seaford, Wantagh, Bellmore, Merrick, Freeport, Baldwin, Rockville Centre, Lynbrook, Valley Stream, Jamaica, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Woodside, Penn Station.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby LB » Wed Oct 19, 2016 5:20 am

I always thought the plan was to begin operations when Phase 1 (RONK to CI) was complete, while work continued to progress on Phase 2 (CI to FARM). It was the RONK to CI section that was identified as the most critical bottle neck on the segment, therefore the first portion to be constructed.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby SwingMan » Wed Oct 19, 2016 6:51 am

There still is at least one major switch reconstruction project needed, including getting all the circuits set-up and tested. Still a ways away.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby tj48 » Thu Oct 20, 2016 1:53 pm

MattAmity90 wrote:Is Straight Path now a 2-track crossing?


No. Still a single track.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MACTRAXX » Thu Oct 20, 2016 5:44 pm

SwingMan wrote:There still is at least one major switch reconstruction project needed, including getting all the circuits set-up and tested. Still a ways away.


SM: Thanks for this message - I figured there was more to be still accomplished then just installing third rail - switch and electrical work are still needed before this
roughly 4 1/2 mile segment (from about MP 48 W to about 43.5 at CI1) goes into service.

I was in CI today and noticed that there are 4 concrete tied track panels at the Peters Blvd. crossing for the second track to be installed. There is now brush and tree
cutting becoming noticeable between Islip Avenue and Brentwood - and the third rails stacked and ready at the CI team yard at Islip Avenue are still there.

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