Bay Shore High Platforms - Why So Early?

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Bay Shore High Platforms - Why So Early?

Postby interface76 » Thu Jun 29, 2017 7:19 pm

I was looking at a timeline of stations the other day and it kind of made me wonder... Pardon me if this was elsewhere as I poked around a bit.

Why was Bay Shore given high level platforms in the early 80's? Wikipedia says it was done in 1984 (I was around that station a lot with my dad as a kid, I was born in 1976 and never remember them being low level and we did a LOT of train watching, but I'll take the Net's word for it).

I would imagine there was some sort of plan to extend electrification past Babylon to there, maybe to handle Fire Island ferry traffic, but I never really saw any other potential infrastructure for any such thing. I grew up between Bay Shore and Islip, and was always interesting seeing the contrast between the two stations in my youth (since Islip didn't get upgraded until 1998).
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Re: Bay Shore High Platforms - Why So Early?

Postby workextra » Fri Jun 30, 2017 12:44 pm

After the plans fell through to electrify to Port Jeff, there was a brief period they considered electrification to possibly Patchogue. And Bayshore given high platforms. Then that plan was canceled and they went ahead with the mainline a few years later.
The mainline being mostly straight and void of many speed restrictions was once considered for 100MPH operations which also did not happen. Relics of this grand plan remain today. The wayside cabsignal test box has the 100 code Ronkonkoma and Westside yard. The latter may be replaced with the current construction there.
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Re: Bay Shore High Platforms - Why So Early?

Postby MattAmity90 » Fri Jun 30, 2017 7:35 pm

In addition, after they electrified from Mineola to Hicksville and Huntington, they were going to electrify the rest of the Port Jefferson Branch. They were confident because Port Jefferson, Stony Brook, St. James, Smithtown, Kings Park, Northport, and Greenlawn all had high level platforms built in anticipation. Obviously it didn't fall through, and the electrification went to the Ronkonkoma Branch from Hicksville to Ronkonkoma. As stated above as for the rest of the stations in diesel territory they were all converted to high level from 1998 to 2001. Then Belmont Park stayed low level, until they finally went to two high level platforms starting with the 2015 racing season.
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: Bay Shore High Platforms - Why So Early?

Postby interface76 » Mon Jul 03, 2017 7:31 pm

Yes I know all about the electrification projects on the other lines - I guess I had always chalked it up to wanting better/quicker entry and exit of all the ferry traffic in the summertime too, since Bay Shore has always had so much ridership based on that fact.
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Re: Bay Shore High Platforms - Why So Early?

Postby MACTRAXX » Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:05 pm


High level platforms at Bay Shore were when built a sort of experiment and were the first remnant of thought
of electrifying to Patchogue during the first half of the 1980s. The big change was closing the Park Avenue grade
crossing to allow the continuous 12 car high level platform to be constructed which literally ran right through the
center of the old station. It would turn out when the C3 trains began service in the late 1990s that shorter length
high platforms on the Montauk Branch from Islip east would be sufficient - there are exceptions such as the 12
car Friday in season PM Cannonball which require a double stop at discharge stations.

On a related matter all of the high level platforms that were built on the Port Jefferson Branch from Greenlawn
east during the 1980s were 12 car length platforms in anticipation of future electrification but would turn out to
eventually not be totally necessary noting that the longest normal C3 trains in use are 8 car sets.

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Re: Bay Shore High Platforms - Why So Early?

Postby bellstbarn » Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:12 pm

ImageBay Shore LIRR by sphoto33, on Flickr

On a summer Sunday afternoon, the westbound trains run hourly. Walkers and bus riders ($5 fare from ferry) arrive in a constant stream, only a third ascending to the narrow platform much before the crossing gate bells announce an arrival. In the above photo, 8709 is carded to run non-stop Patchogue to Jamaica in 60 minutes. Let's call it a local-express from Montauk.

ImageBay Shore LIRR by sphoto33, on Flickr

The platform is too narrow for benches, and the waiting room and ticket office are locked. People loiter in the shade provided by the station design. I question whether the narrow, almost dangerously narrow, platform was dictated by the closeness of the station to the tracks. Was there a bay window on the station at one time, so the agent could report passing trains or give train orders? Someplace I saw an old photo of the NYNY&HRR station at New Rochelle with a massive crowd, ten deep or so, awaiting perhaps an m-u of gate cars. The station was placed far back, and the crowd could gather under a large canopy. Bay Shore seems to offer less room than Mineola, that is, room out the front door of the station.
Train 8769 was announced as eight minutes late, and so it was. Five cars, but the doors of the cab car did not open. The crowd was told to move east, the opposite of what I have other times seen at this station. A few minutes later, Train 8711 coasted by, delayed by the late local.
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