• Penn Station Emergency Repairs: Trackwork, etc.

  • Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.
Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, mtuandrew, Tadman

  by Gilbert B Norman
blockline4180 wrote: ....the train from NY/NJ to Chicago this summer and now the only options I have is the extremely long Cardinal(only 3 days a week) or taking a shuttle to Albany to get the LSL...
Mr. Block, it appears that 50-51, The Cardinal, will terminate/originate at Washington during this year's "Summer of Hell" at Penn.
  by blockline4180
Thank you!!. If anything the trip will be to Chicago in September to see the 765, but even that is up in the air now!! Regardless, if I do go the changing of trains would probably be at Albany for 49.
  by Allouette
Albany is well run, with escalators and elevators. The Empire trains are also well run, with good crews that act like they do this every day. Other than reduced legroom compared to LD cars, the Empire trains are pretty nice.
  by EuroStar
There is more work going on at Penn than what has been publicly detailed. As I have mentioned in the past, track 5A is history. They seem to be digging up the track bed including ballast and such. At the location the number 1 green dot on the image they are down to the solid rock. I wonder how they plan to dig further. Track 3D next to the postal platform has been out of service for a few weeks not, but today they were cutting the rails at location of the number 2 green dot. I cannot imagine that this is just simple track renewal for a yard track. There has also been a lot of activity at the location of the number 3 green dot, but I have not been able to make lots of sense out of it other than that at least one of tracks 1E and 2E is still in service. Clearly none of this work is for the renewal of switches and platform tracks. Does anyone know what exactly is being done and why?

Additionally there was a Loram undercutter on track 1A recently and today there were cars with track panels.
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  by Backshophoss
Switches to allow the Empire connector(2 Main) to access more platform tracks at NY Penn than can be accessed now.
  by EuroStar
Given the location of the work that makes sense. Any idea why they chose to do this now? While the work will eventually benefit Gateway, I am not aware of NY state planning increases in the Empire Service, so I find it very interesting that it was found as necessary thing to do now. Has the Empire Service been suffering due to the limited number of tracks available to it?
  by Ridgefielder
Think of it more as providing greater flexibility which in turn helps the facility run more smoothly, than as something required by increased service to Upstate New York.
  by EuroStar
There is no doubt that this will provide greater flexibility, but a curious mind remains curious (and unsatisfied) forever. The cost of this work is definitely in the millions and is certainly keeping a few crews busy for quite a few months. With ESA, the Hartford Line and the Penn Track renewal going on at the same time, one would think that if a project (such as this Empire connector switches) is being concurrently worked on, then the pay off of such project would be somewhat more tangible than a vague "greater flexibility".

One must wonder whether making the Empire trains arrive and depart on tracks 1 or 2 (as long as they do not need servicing at Sunnyside, or maybe move all the servicing to Albany) is not flexible enough. It eliminates intersecting moves between the Empire trains and the NJT trains on the low-numbered tracks. It eliminates a few moves through the East River tunnels too. You obviously cannot do that once the new tunnel is built, but till then what flexibility is this work really buying Amtrak that it is worth spending the money now as opposed to the time when new tunnels are actually being built?

I know that this is just forum on the net and I do not expect authoritative answers, it is that I just cannot make sense of this and hope that someone else can.
  by east point
Since the SD bridge needs out of service work why not do this work now and then there is no need to do it 5 years or more in the future ? + the extra funds are here in this FY.
  by Backshophoss
Doing a little bit of "Future Proofing" for Gateway and not getting tangled up with NJT trains as the Empire Service is sharing space with them now.
With DV bridge out,there's almost no traffic on 2 Main except for some work trains supporting trackwork on the branch.
  by east point
All this work could end up increasing NYP's capacity and thru put by some undetermined amount. If Gateway tunnels are complete before Penn south is complete and at least one of the North river tunnel bores is still operational then this work will be very important for the increase in trains from NJ.
  by Allouette
Since all Empire Service trains originate and terminate at Sunnyside, giving access to more than tracks 5-9 ends up being a win for both Amtrak and NJT. At this point only lines 1 and 2 in the East River Tunnels can be used by Empire trains. A couple of carefully placed crossovers could potentially allow Empire trains to reach lines 3 and 4 as well.
  by east point
That is vital information. That means if East river tunnels 1 & / or 2 go out of service then Empire trains can easily get to / from Sunnyside other wise bad Karma. Now is East river bores 1 & 2 the bores damaged by "Sandy" ?
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