LIRR Progress in pictures, and important recent news

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LIRR Progress in pictures, and important recent news
Posted by daveklepper on Thursday, January 2, 2020 10:21 PM
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Posted by NKP guy on Friday, January 3, 2020 8:24 AM

   The LIRR PR piece is impressive in every way to this Ohioan.  You New Yorkers may pay higher taxes than we flatlanders do, but look at what you get!  The LIRR replaced more bridges in these photographs than the Ohio DOT.  At least, it looks like it.  Modern up-to-date stations, new and better equipment...what's not to like?

   Thanks for posting this and thereby giving railfans hope for the future.  

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Posted by 54light15 on Friday, January 3, 2020 10:45 AM

That is impressive and as an ex-Long Islander, the LIRR has sure come a long way from the days of "Dashing Dan." 

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Friday, January 3, 2020 11:16 AM

Great photo show!  Thanks David!

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Posted by Miningman on Friday, January 3, 2020 12:27 PM

I dunno, Valley Stream Station looks kind of clinical... nice see through garbage can though!  ... and it's the only one with any people in it... where are all the people? Mass Transit... no mass.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, February 4, 2020 11:09 AM

Reconstructed LIRR 2-track elevated Nostrand Avenue (on Atantic Avenue) Station. now with handiciapped access:

Nostrand Avenue 07-08-19

The rehabilitated Nostrand Avenue Station is part of a broader effort to modernize LIRR rail stations and contribute to the economic development of the region. More information about the station renewal project is available at, at this link:

Nostrand Avenue 07-08-19

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Posted by Electroliner 1935 on Wednesday, February 5, 2020 9:38 PM


Dave, Can you provide what I'm seeing in the Nassau Switch picture. Is that a movable frog on a high speed switch?

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Posted by daveklepper on Saturday, February 8, 2020 1:09 PM

Yes   Exactly

Also in use on Metro North

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, February 25, 2020 7:35 AM
Date: February 21, 2020 at 06:07:01 CST

Subject: Jamaica Platform F opens for passenger serviceu

Jamaica Platform F opens for passenger service
The new platform F at Jamaica has opened, with the first passenger train to use the new platform departing unceremoniously late Thursday evening.  The platform, which is south of the existing five passenger platforms at Jamaica, has been built similar in appearance to the existing station platforms (which were renovated over the course of the mid-2000’s) and are designated as tracks 11 and 12.  Current station tracks are numbered 1 through 8; track 9 is a bypass track that hooks into track 8 at both ends, and track 10 is a reconfigured bypass track, which will primarily allow freight and other non-passenger trains to bypass the station.  The platform is offset west slightly from the rest of the platforms and connects up to the existing AirTrain overpass and down the street level at Sutphin Boulevard at its very east end.  The west overpass at Jamaica was extended to go over the new platform.  To meet freight clearances, the overpass has a second set of steps up so it crosses with a floor level that’s higher than the rest of the overpass (making it an up-up-and-over transfer, in a way).  You can see photos of the new platform at this link.

Trains operating to Brooklyn from the new platform will use track routes through Jamaica that have been largely untrodden by passenger trains in recent times.  Westbound trains departing from the new platform will head up on the southernmost flyover towards the old Lower Montauk Branch, and then connect back to Atlantic Branch track 2 at DUNTON Interlocking.  Eastbound trains from Brooklyn will switch onto the Brooklyn freight bypass track, which cuts off the curve that most of the other Atlantic Branch tracks take to pass under the Main Line and Montauk Branch flyovers.  There is a new set of crossovers just west of the station.  Click the image below to see an overview of the routing.

Final works on track 12 are still not completed yet
(Photo: The LIRR Today)
The $301.7 million first phase of the Jamaica Capacity “Improvement” project was originally supposed to be completed back in January 2014, and with the full completion of the first portion of the scope still not expected until October 2021, the project is significantly behind schedule.  In the last formal update, the railroad had said as recently as October that Platform F was supposed to be done in the last quarter of 2019, so the opening date has slid by several weeks.  The remaining track and infrastructure for the new platform is expected to be completed in Q3 2020, and the new universal crossovers in Q3 2021.  Track 12 and the new crossovers west of the station do not appear to be in service yet…track 12 isn’t even tied in to the east switch, and the first trains operated using the Montauk Branch flyover in both directions.

Current transfers at Jamaica are usually cross-platform and very easy...
The new platform is one of the major components of phase 1 of the Jamaica Capacity “Improvement” Project.  The LIRR has stated in the past that their intention is to cut off Brooklyn service and segregate it from the rest of the system, offering only shuttle service between Atlantic Terminal and this new platform F at Jamaica.  Passengers wishing to connect to points east will be forced to make an up-and-over transfer in each direction using one of two overpasses at either end of the platform.  This plan, if carried through, would represent a significant downgrade in service from the direct trains offered today, and easy cross-platform transfers for everyone else.  As I have written in the past, the LIRR’s plan in this area is extremely misguided and would likely deal a significant blow to Brooklyn ridership.  When forced to make an additional transfer, most riders bound for Lower Manhattan (or even Downtown Brooklyn) will likely elect to just stay on the train and connect to the subway at NY-Penn Station or, eventually, NY-Grand Central instead (cutting a three-seat ride with a long up-and-over transfer down to a two-seat ride).  This will needlessly push additional riders through already very crowded New York terminals and onto jammed Manhattan subway lines.

Brooklyn riders will need to hike down to the south end of the overpasses
to make their connections (Photo: The LIRR Today)
While LIRR pledged more frequent service (about every 7-8 minutes during rush hours and 15 minutes off-peak), they will very likely not be guaranteed connections like they are today (although the railroad has become far more liberal in intentionally letting trains depart without their scheduled connections over the past several months), and there’s no guarantee that the trains will be well-synced with connections from New York at Jamaica, like they are (to some extent) today.  Either way you slice it, the plan will all but certainly extend door-to-door travel times for all but a small handful of existing passengers, as riders now must make a time consuming transfer by detraining from their first train, walking to one of the two overpasses at the ends of the station, climbing up the stairs, crossing over to the next platform, and descending to the platform level again.

There is a single elevator serving the new platform, all the way at the east end of the platform, like all of the other passenger elevators at the complex.  This makes the lengthy transfer even more arduous for people with mobility impairments…  Someone arriving on a train from eastern LI in one of the first few cars must move east almost the entire length of the platform, take the elevator up to the AirTrain overpass, make their way down to platform F, and take the elevator down to the platform for their next train.  And because the elevator is at the very east end of platform F, but at both Nostrand Avenue and Brooklyn-Atlantic Terminal, the elevators are all at the very west end of the platforms, people with mobility impairments must then move the entire length of the train (either at Jamaica or their destination).  That’s a significant amount of locomotion required for a population that already has lots of difficulty with that…

While the LIRR pushed the shuttleization idea quite hard in the early stages of East Side Access, officials seem to be wavering on that position in recent years.  Though, even still, neither the MTA nor the LIRR have offered Brooklyn riders any clarity at all as to what their service might be like in the coming years.  And instead they have pressed on with constructing the new platform essential to the significantly flawed plan (and relatively useless for anything else).

The entrance to the new platform F from the AirTrain overpass.  The new
platform is offset west, so there's no second set of stairs (The LIRR Today)
For now, the timetable card posted on the website for the three new trains operating as shuttles between Jamaica and Brooklyn say they are only operating "on select weekdays when announced by LIRR supervision", which suggests they will probably be used as some filler/supplemental trains for Barclays Center events that aren’t Islanders games.  The trains now, as the LIRR has scheduled them, are almost completely useless and do not add any extra travel options, unless you are one of the very few people who travel locally between Brooklyn and Jamaica at that time of night.  Both westbound trains leave just four minutes after already-scheduled trains to Brooklyn and do not take on any additional connections.  The one and only eastbound train departs 5 minutes before an existing Long Beach train, and again serves zero additional connections.

There were 29 LIRR employees on hand for the initial departure from Jamaica, including a full train crew plus an additional collector (for a total of four), at least 8 MTA police officers, and a handful of managers and other spectators.  The first departure from Jamaica had a grand total of 3 paying passengers onboard (only one of which was an ordinary commuter who dove through the doors, panting, just before departure after he had just missed the prior train).  The eastbound train had approximately 50 adults onboard, plus another two dozen or so small children, most of which were on their way home from the Jurassic World show at the Barclays Center.  A small handful of people made their way down to the street at Jamaica, but most ended up having to run up and over to make connections to points east.  Laying aside all of the managers, cops, and spectators and assuming the extra crew was working on overtime, the three shuttle trains had an average operating cost per passenger of about $34...

While the LED lights on the new platform are certainly very bright, the future for LIRR’s service to Brooklyn is not, and significant uncertainty looms as officials stay silent on future plans for Brooklyn service, either because they haven’t made up their mind (despite spending all of this money on physical investments now) or because they’re hoping not many people catch on to what’s about to happen…

[This item appeared first on The LIRR Today.]

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, February 25, 2020 8:29 AM

This whole Jamaica "Improvement" Program doesn't seem to amount to much from the passengers' perspective.  Who thought up this thing?

Perhaps it's time to review it using people like those who figured out where the cables should be run in MTA tunnels.  The article might be sarcastic, but I think many, perhaps all the things established in it are real.

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Posted by daveklepper on Sunday, April 19, 2020 4:34 AM

Statements from MTA Chairman and CEO Pat Foye and LIRR President Phil Eng

Statement from MTA Chairman and CEO Pat Foye:
"Ray Kenny was a beloved and universally respected railroader who was laser focused on improving the lives of his customers and colleagues at all levels of the Long Island Railroad and New Jersey Transit. Ray began his storied career at the LIRR 50 years ago and held a number of key positions over many years, including Acting President. Ray was a member of the MTA family and he will be deeply missed. His legacy is felt by generations of LIRR customers and employees."
Statement from LIRR President Phil Eng:
"Ray was a legend. While I never had the opportunity to work with him at the LIRR, the results of his leadership where clear throughout the railroad when I came on board. The entire railroad is hurting right now."
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Posted by MidlandMike on Sunday, April 19, 2020 10:14 PM

What happened to Mr. Kenny?

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Posted by matthewsaggie on Monday, April 20, 2020 9:06 PM

Covid-19 got him.

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Posted by PJS1 on Sunday, April 26, 2020 10:16 AM
Great pictures!
I grew up in Altoona.  My uncle lived in Flushing and worked in NYC.  During my last two years of high school (1956 and 1957), I found numerous opportunities to visit him.
I rode the PRR from Altoona to Penn Station, NYC, and then the LIRR to Murray Hill Station.  I remember my uncle telling me not to get off the train at Main Street, Flushing. 
My uncle’s house was on Station Road in Flushing.  The LIRR ran right by the front door; we used to sit on the porch in the good weather and watch the trains go by. 
The pictures of the Flushing Street Station brought back many fond memories. 

Rio Grande Valley, CFI,CFII

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Posted by daveklepper on Friday, October 23, 2020 1:44 AM

Heroic LIRR Employees Save Customer’s Life at East New York Station in Brooklyn

Employees Act Quickly to Bring Man to Safety After He Falls on Tracks 

LIRR President Recognizes Employees for Their Rescue 

View Photo of Rescue

View Video of Commendations  

View Photos of Commendations  

Long Island Rail Road President Phil Eng today honored five LIRR employees who worked together to save the life of a customer who had fallen onto the tracks during the morning rush hour at the LIRR’s East New York station in Brooklyn on Wednesday, Oct. 21. 

All five employees – Gregory Hartley, Kevin Rattigan, Larry Woods, Stacy Augustine and Shelwyn Hendy -- work as a team to assist with safety protection on the tracks while crews are performing roadwork on an adjacent project. 

The incident happened Wednesday, Oct. 21, at approximately 7:29 a.m. All five employees had just wrapped up their job briefing for the day when they heard a loud sound caused by the man falling onto Track 2 at the east end of the eastbound platform. 

One of the employees quickly contacted the tower operator to stop trains coming from through the area. Two employees served as look outs to make sure no trains were approaching. Meanwhile, others worked to calm the man down until it was safe for them to go onto the tracks themselves to help him up. 

As this was developing, the man stumbled and lost his footing when his shoe got stuck between rails. Employees went onto the tracks and loosened the man’s shoelaces to help get his foot out of his shoe in order to free him from the rails. The employees completed the rescue and walked him to the end of the platform where FDNY and NYPD crews were waiting. 

“Our employees always rise to the occasion and this is a true example of the heroes who work among us, said Phil Eng, President of Long Island Rail Road. “Not only has the workforce stepped up ensuring invaluable service in our fight against the pandemic but the quick action by – Gregory, Kevin, Larry, Stacy and Shelwyn saved a life. Not exactly verbatim from a well-known superhero, but in this case, it fits; Faster than a speeding locomotive! We cannot thank them enough.” 

“We tried to keep the man calm and all of us as a team, we saved this man’s life and he’s able to go home to his family because of us,” said Shelwyn Hendy, of the LIRR crew“Behind the scenes, we all do our jobs and we’re glad we could help this gentleman.” 

“This couldn’t have gone any better if we had practiced it,” said Larry Woods, of the LIRR crew“I did what I could to help, the man was very disoriented and I was nervous that he was going to touch that rail. I’m just glad we were all able to get out of there safely.”  

“We heard a thud, turned around and that’s when we noticed the gentleman down on the tracks, laying draped across the third rail protection board,” said Gregory Hartley, of the LIRR crew“It’s a scary situation and he could have been electrocuted at any moment. At that point our first reaction was to make sure we stopped any train that could come through.” 

“My first instinct was to turn my radio to channel one and try to let any incoming traffic coming into the platform know that there was someone on the tracks and they could not come in,” said Stacy Augustine, of the LIRR crew“My role was to make sure there were no westbound trains coming in until it was safe and the man got off the tracks.” 

“I was the west end lookout during the operation to make sure that I could stop any eastbound train traffic in a sufficient amount of time so nothing bad would happen and they could safely get the man off the tracks,” said Kevin Rattigan, of the LIRR crew. 

“Conductors providing Roadway Worker Protection for the countless Contractors who work around our live tracks each and every day is an amazing feat in itself and often taken for granted,” said Anthony Simon, General Chairman, International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers, Transportation Division 505. “When they take extra steps to assist a customer who ends up in danger without hesitation such as this incident, it just exemplifies the dedication and commitment of our workers. I couldn’t be more proud.” 

Gregory Hartley has worked for the LIRR for 23 years, Kevin Rattigan has been an employee for 19 years, Larry Woods for 14 years, Stacy Augustine for 22 years and Shelwyn Hendy for 24 years.  


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Posted by daveklepper on Sunday, April 25, 2021 2:28 AM
April 23, 2021

LIRR Conductor Reunites Customer With $107K Worth of Missing Jewelry Left on Train

See B-Roll Video of Reunion 

See Photos of Reunion 

A gem of a Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) conductor was commended today for discovering and turning in a tray of $107,000 worth of engagement rings, some with embedded diamonds, left behind by a jeweler on his way to Port Washington Thursday evening, April 22. 

Assistant Conductor Jonathan Yellowday, a Murray Hill, Queens resident, was working on the 6:11 p.m. train from Penn Station to Port Washington when he found the case of jewelry in a plastic bag. The rings belong to jeweler Ed Eleasian who has an office in Midtown Manhattan. He was on his way home and didn’t realize he had left behind the tray of trinkets. 

Conductor Yellowday couldn’t believe what he had discovered and knew that he needed to get the items to the MTA police as soon as possible. “I got on the next train going back to Penn, turned it in, and the rest is history,” he said. 

Eleasian and his wife took the LIRR into Penn Station Friday afternoon to retrieve the items at the MTA PD District 4 office in Penn Station. The grateful jeweler was met by LIRR President Phil Eng, Conductor Yellowday, and MTA Board Member and Vice General Chairman of the Sheet Metal Air Rail Transportation Union (SMART) Vincent Tessitore where President Eng presented Yellowday with a commendation for his swift and thoughtful actions. 

“Not only did you find and return these 36 rings, but just think about the happiness of 36 couples down the road that will be joined together in happiness, and they’ll have a story to tell,” President Eng said in commending the conductor. “So, thank you for your heroic actions and saving the day for 36 future couples. I understand the value of these diamond rings, but everything found and returned to the customer is immensely important to them. You treated this just as you should have and it’s another proud day for us at the railroad.” 

Conductor Yellowday, who has been at Long Island Railroad for seven years, has seen many lost items during his tenure, but nothing close to the value of this find. 

After receiving a heartfelt hug from Eleasian today, Conductor Yellowday said, “I could only imagine what you were going through yesterday when you realized that you didn’t have your jewelry. You know when you get on the 6:11 you’re in good hands.” 

Attachments area
Preview YouTube video MTA Video Release - LIRR Conductor Reunites Customer with $100K of Missing Jewelry
MTA Video Release - LIRR Conductor Reunites Customer with $100K of Missing Jewelry

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