MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdale

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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby jayrmli » Fri Jan 25, 2013 9:42 pm

The Pineaire section should see little disruption at all. It's already double tracked in this area.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby bellstbarn » Sat Jan 26, 2013 7:56 pm

From Farmingdale to Ronkonkoma, there seem to be about eighteen grade crossings. I fear the day that someone driving a heavy truck of molasses, oil, or steel crosses in front of a train, causing a massive collision or wild derailment. The recent Brentwood crash involved only a medium-weight automobile. That the NY Department of Transportation built a 12-lane bridge crossing Wicks Road but has not yet built a two-track bridge at the Main Line's crossing two miles south of I-495 remains the wrong decision.
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Wicks Road (Fifth Avenue) appears to be the widest road crossed at grade. Or is there a wider one? Or is there a busier grade crossing?
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I count five grade-separated crossings in that stretch:
NY 110 at Republic.
NY 231 at Deer Park.
Sagtikos Parkway
NY 454 Veterans Hwy
County Rd 29 Ronkonkoma Avenue
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Which was the first location to be separated?
Thanks.

Joe
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby RRJS3 » Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:06 pm

Commack Road is also pretty wide, believe there was a non fatal collision there within the past month or two. The majority of crossings on this stretch are rather busy, and many have significant truck traffic. New Highway, Wellwood Ave, Executive Drive, and Route 111 kinda come to mind for me. There will be similar accidents in the future, people just apparently don't learn from these crashes, regardless of how horrific they are. With service only expected to increase, they need to be better protected.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby Backshophoss » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:39 am

It might be in LIRR's best interest to 4-gate the active crossings on this streach of double track,the crossings need to be upgraded
anyway,put in centerline barriers as well. It might be the only way to save the public from themselves.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby Tommy Meehan » Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:57 am

RRJS3 wrote:...people just apparently don't learn from these crashes, regardless of how horrific they are...


It's not people don't learn from these crashes. I'm a person and I don't need to learn anything from these accidents. I already know it. I would never zoom around activated crossing gates and the vast vast majority of drivers never would either.

You have a certain small percentage of really reckless aggressive drivers out there who would and will continue to do so. Nonetheless, driver distraction or inattention probably causes the majority of these kinds of accidents. That type of driver probably will learn something from the terrible accident in Brentwood last week

I wonder if anyone would've advocated putting in that type of protection, a four-gate crossing, where the Brentwood accident occurred? Prior to the accident, I mean. I saw the location on Google maps in street-view. It looks like a low-volume two-lane side street in a residential area. I agree the four-gate crossings are a good idea, make that the standard going forth.

Another idea they might want to consider is putting high-resolution cameras in at crossings where there have been problems. They pay for themselves and they're 24/7 protection.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby bellstbarn » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:08 pm

Newsday for today, 1.27.2013, Nassau Edition, page A18, "Your Community Watchdog," has a story of a Road Resurfacing Project placard for work at the Stewart Avenue, Bethpage, crossing, apparently sponsored by Nassau County, with the Supervisor's name in big capital letters. To quote: "The LIRR will install center medians on Stewart, realign existing crossing gates, and add new gates."
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The supervisor is up for reelection in October.

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(I have watched commuters get off an evening eastbound at Bethpage and cross in front of the train before the gates lift. Stupid. There's another track, folks. Also, I have seen the road-dividers at quiet-zone crossings between Hingham, Massachusetts, and Cohasset. Those dividers looked 100ft long or so, not easily bypassed. The locomotive horns don't blow, but the electronic gate bells screech!)
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby lirr42 » Sun Jan 27, 2013 4:16 pm

That Stewart Av Crossing in Bethpage is a bad one. Especially around 5:51 when the local to Farmingdale is dumping people off on Track 1 (the westbound one) and a first-stop Wyandanch express comes whaling through that crossing at MAS at the same time on Track 2 (eastbound one). But boy does that second engineer really lay on that horn... The "Warning! Second Train Coming!" sings they installed are probably a big help there, but more gates would be quite helpful as well.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby Head-end View » Sun Jan 27, 2013 5:43 pm

Yes, that "second train coming" system is impressive to see and hear. And that crossing does have a bad history. In about 1990 a family of 4 people were killed in an accident there in a snowstorm when they got stuck on the tracks in heavy traffic and were broadsided by an eastbound diesel train.

But my guess is the real reason Nassau County is doing road improvements there is because County Executive Mangano is from Bethpage.

Re: 4-quadrant gates, they will stop drivers from going thru, but the traditional reason they were not used in the U.S. is due to the possibility of a vehicle getting "trapped" on the crossing when the gates go down. Though there is a type of gate made that will bend in a horizontal arc if a car hits it to get off the crossing. Probably expensive...........
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MattAmity90 » Sun Jan 27, 2013 6:00 pm

I was just about to say the Stewart Avenue grade crossing in Bethpage. Another grade crossing that I find dangerous is S Oyster Bay Road between Hicksville and Bethpage near the old Grumman Airfield.

As far as wide grade crossings go that still exist THROUGHOUT the LIRR, these are the widest in my opinion by community:

1.) New Hyde Park Road in New Hyde Park
2.) Robbins Lane in Syosset
3.) S Oyster Bay Road in Hicksville
4.) Stewart Avenue in Bethpage
5.) Merritts Road in Farmingdale
6.) Straight Path in Wyandanch
7.) Commack Road & Executive Drive/Grant Avenue in Deer Park
8.) Wicks Road/Islip Avenue in Brentwood
9.) Carlton Avenue/Lowell Avenue in Central Islip
10.) Ocean Avenue in Ronkonkoma
11.) William Floyd Parkway in Mastic-Shirley
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby lirr42 » Sun Jan 27, 2013 6:53 pm

MattAmity90 wrote:11.) William Floyd Parkway in Mastic-Shirley

The William Floyd Parkway crossings sure are big. 6 lanes cross the Montauk Branch at that point (three in each direction). They have a center median in the middle of that one, I believe, but nothing special, it's the same thing that exists on that road away from the crossing,
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby Backshophoss » Sun Jan 27, 2013 7:28 pm

On 4 gate crossings,the "exit" gates drop about 5-8 seconds after the main gates drop,to allow any vehicle to
clear the tracks,all gates are made to "breakaway" if struck,so you are not "trapped".

With increased service,there will be increased horn useage,then the call for "Quiet Zones" will start,
by putting in 4-way gates,centerline barriers now,conversion to quiet zone will be easy.
ALL the crossings are being upgraded any way,easier to do it now,not having to retro-fit later.
Could save $$$ too. :)
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MACTRAXX » Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:06 pm

bellstbarn wrote:From Farmingdale to Ronkonkoma, there seem to be about eighteen grade crossings. I fear the day that someone driving a heavy truck of molasses, oil, or steel crosses in front of a train, causing a massive collision or wild derailment. The recent Brentwood crash involved only a medium-weight automobile. That the NY Department of Transportation built a 12-lane bridge crossing Wicks Road but has not yet built a two-track bridge at the Main Line's crossing two miles south of I-495 remains the wrong decision.
-----
Wicks Road (Fifth Avenue) appears to be the widest road crossed at grade. Or is there a wider one? Or is there a busier grade crossing?
-----
I count five grade-separated crossings in that stretch:
NY 110 at Republic.
NY 231 at Deer Park.
Sagtikos Parkway
NY 454 Veterans Hwy
County Rd 29 Ronkonkoma Avenue
----
Which was the first location to be separated?
Thanks.

Joe


Joe: Of those five locations mentioned I know these two:

The Veterans Highway (NYS 454) Bridge was built by Suffolk County in 1949...
Back then V.H. was Suffolk County Route 78...Conveyed to NYS on March 29,1972...

The Ronkonkoma Avenue bridge was built in 1990 to replace the rickety old bridge crossing at that location...
That allowed Easton Street-paralleling the Main Line to the S-to go directly into the S parking lot at Ronkonkoma
Station...

These are probably the oldest (1949) and most recent (1990) locations to be separated...

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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MACTRAXX » Thu Jan 31, 2013 7:56 pm

BSB: I had opportunity to go to the Republic area today...

On the Route 110 LIRR overpass there is a brass NYS plaque with a State seal including the following information:

SH 1219; STA 171.75; LIRR; State of New York 1956

The plaque is located adjacent to the closed entrance to the EB Republic platform on the abutment wall on the
NB side of Route 110...

There should be similar markings at both the Route 231/Deer Park avenue LIRR overpass and the Pine Aire Drive
underpass at the Sagtikos Parkway-that bridge and the LIRR underpass at Pine-Aire were built together...
Both of these projects were NYS DOT constructed...

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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby Jeff Smith » Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:11 pm

Information center opens: Newsday (subs.req'd)

...The center provides details on the LIRR's $430-million plan to build a second track along a 20-mile, mostly single-track stretch between Farmingdale and Ronkonkoma. The LIRR says it expects construction on the project to begin by the end of 2013 and be completed by 2018.

...As part of the project, the LIRR plans to reopen a station near Republic Airport that has been closed since 1986.

"The economic impact to Long Island is significant," said State Sen. Charles Fuschillo (R-Merrick), who helped secure $138 million for the project's first phase. "And we need it."

A second track will also allow the LIRR to run more trains, and the agency is already planning to to provide half-hourly off-peak service on the Ronkonkoma line.

"I can tell you from personal experience that the need for a second track is huge," said Mark Epstein, chairman of the LIRR Commuter Council, who travels on the Ronkonkoma line. The LIRR said 44,700 passengers use the line daily.The LIRR is inviting the public to review its Double Track plans both at the new information center and online at mta.info/lirr.
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Re: MTA LIRR Double Track Project - Ronkonkoma to Farmingdal

Postby MACTRAXX » Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:39 pm

JS: Thanks for that Newsday link mentioning a Information Center to be located at Ronkonkoma Station...

This should be located in the former MTA Police office across from the Ticket Office in which the 4 day
information session was held 1/16 to 1/19...This is a good idea to have this for the duration of this project...

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