Service Diversions 04-27-17

I have just updated the Service Diversions for the upcoming weekend through the end of next week.

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MTA Announces Off Peak Belmont Service

The MTA has announced off peak service to Belmont Racetrack. Here are the details via the press release I received:

Thoroughbred racing returns to Belmont Park on Friday, April 28, as the racetrack’s 2017 Spring-Summer meet gets underway. And once again, the Long Island Rail Road and New York Racing Association (NYRA) have joined together to provide daily train service for racing fans. Fans who ride the LIRR can get $1 off grandstand admission by showing a train ticket or MTA eTix app screen.

The LIRR operates two off-peak round-trips to Belmont Park each racing day and lots of extra service on Belmont Stakes day, Saturday, June 10. The LIRR has posted information about fares and travel tips. For train departure times, the LIRR has released its Belmont Park Spring Meet Timetable with information through May 21. Copies are available at stations and at www.mta.info/lirr. In all, the LIRR will offer service to Belmont Park for all 54 days of racing through Sunday, July 16.

Fans making the short trip to Belmont Park aboard the LIRR will once again find a newly refurbished Belmont Park Station with its new 10-car long high level platforms, new staircases, new lighting and a ramp that provides platform access to mobility-impaired customers. The upgrades were completed in the 2015 Belmont Stakes.

The Belmont spring/summer meet also will feature a second big event, the internationally themed “Stars & Stripes Festival” featuring the Grade 1, $1.25 million Belmont Derby and the $1 million Belmont Oaks on Saturday, July 8. And of course, in the weeks leading up to the Belmont Stakes, Belmont Park will be the place to watch the first two legs of the Triple Crown as it hosts a Kentucky Derby simulcast on Saturday, May 6 and a Preakness Stakes simulcast on Saturday, May 20.

LIRR Service to Belmont Park on Wednesdays, Thursdays & Fridays

To Belmont

The LIRR’s daily Belmont Special will depart from Penn Station at 10:52 a.m., making stops at Woodside at 11:04 a.m. and Jamaica at 11:13 a.m. and arriving at Belmont Station at 11:27 a.m. Fans from Brooklyn can connect via an 10:35 a.m. departure from Atlantic Terminal.

A second Belmont train departs from Jamaica at 12:20 p.m. Jamaica can be reached via an easy connection from the EJZ subway lines, an 11:38 a.m. LIRR departure from Penn Station, an 11:35 a.m. LIRR departure from Atlantic Terminal, or westbound trains from Long Island.

Returning from the Park

Trains will depart Belmont Station at 3:42 p.m. and approximately 6:25 p.m. The second train is timed to depart approximately 30 minutes after the last race, and the departure time is subject to change based on the timing of racing events.

LIRR Service to Belmont Service on Saturdays, Sundays & Holidays

To Belmont

On Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, the Belmont Special departs Penn Station at 11:04 a.m., stopping at Woodside at 11:16 a.m. and Jamaica at 11:27 a.m., arriving at Belmont at 11:43 a.m.

A second Belmont train departs from Jamaica at 12:30 p.m. Jamaica can be reached via an easy connection from the EJZ subway lines, an 11:51 a.m. LIRR departure from Penn Station, an 11:42 a.m. LIRR departure from Atlantic Terminal, or westbound trains from Long Island.

A second train leaves Penn Station at 11:51 a.m. and arrives in Jamaica at 12:12 p.m., where customers change for a 12:30 p.m. shuttle train to Belmont that arrives at 12:43 p.m. Customers coming from Brooklyn can take the 10:42 a.m. and 11:42 a.m. trains from Atlantic Terminal and connect with the Belmont trains at Jamaica.

Returning from the Park

Trains will depart Belmont Park at 4:41 p.m. and approximately 6:12 p.m. The second train is timed to depart approximately 30 minutes after the last race, and the departure time is subject to change based on the timing of racing events.

MTA Bus Routes Extended; Fans Can Change from the Subway

The MTA’s Q2 and Q110 bus routes will once again be extended to Belmont Park for the upcoming Spring/Summer racing season.  Effective Friday, April 28, 2017, until Sunday, July 16, 2017, the Q2/Q110 buses will discharge, layover, and pick-up customers in designated stops at Belmont Park Racetrack bus terminal on racing days.

Going to the park, customers exit the bus at the escalator leading to the LIRR overpass.  Leaving the park, the buses pull up to the designated Q2 and Q110 bus stops adjacent to the LIRR station.  These changes will only be in effect when Belmont Park Racetrack is open.  The Q2 connects to the F subway line at 169th Street and Hillside Avenue and at 179th Street and Hillside Avenue.  The Q110 bus connects to the EJZ subway lines at Jamaica Center-Parsons-Archer.

Purchasing LIRR Tickets in Advance

To avoid higher on-board fares and save time, customers should purchase round-trip tickets in advance by using MTA eTix, the MTA’s new free mobile ticketing app where you can purchase LIRR or Metro-North tickets anytime, anywhere, or by purchasing tickets from ticket machines or windows.

City Ticket is not valid for travel to or from Belmont Park. Belmont Package tickets are available at LIRR ticket offices as well as from gray, blue and green ticket machines at stations. Tickets are NOT sold at Belmont Station. Belmont tickets cannot be purchased through the alphabetized station listing screen on the ticket machines. Round-trip tickets are not sold aboard trains.

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LIRR W/B Service Suspended Into Penn Station

Once again riders of the busiest commuter railroad agency in the country are at the mercy of others. LIRR riders are facing a rough commute home this evening with delays on every line along with the complete suspension of westbound service into Penn Station due to Amtrak issues.

The issues started this morning when an Amtrak Empire Service train stalled entering Penn Station. Next up the agency started having overhead wire issues in Queens. Both incidents are once again leading to reduced capacity for both the LIRR & NJ Transit.

The timing of these incidents does not bode well as the agency has been under constant attack of late due to the numerous incidents that have led to major delays for commuters in & out of Penn Station. The MTA itself is completely fed up with Amtrak running Penn Station & are starting to put more pressure on the state to take over the facility.

I personally feel that stripping Amtrak of its control over the station is long overdue. They can’t even provide enough police for the facility, what makes you think they can properly run it completely. Their track record continues to prove that they can’t & changes need to be made as soon as possible.

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Man Stabbed At 161 St-Yankee Stadium Station

Earlier this afternoon, a man was stabbed in the chest inside the busy 161 Street-Yankee Stadium B Train, D Train & 4 Train subway station. The incident which took place around approximately 2:15 pm at the bottom of the stairs leading up to the turnstile area.

The 30 year old victim was taken to Lincoln Hospital where he is currently in serious but stable condition. Thankfully I can report that he is expected to survive.

At this time, the suspect is still on the loose. Hopefully he gets caught soon.

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M79 Select Bus Service Postponed To May

Upper East Side residents will have to wait a little while longer for the launch of Select Bus Service on the M79. The crosstown service running from East End Avenue to Riverside Drive will be postponed until next month. Shaye Weaver of DNA Info has more:

Commuters will have to wait another month for Select Bus Service to begin on the crosstown M79 route, the MTA said.

In February, the MTA announced the new service — which will travel crosstown from East End Avenue to Riverside Drive with fewer stops, off-board ticket purchasing and new bus lanes — would begin sometime in April.

But officials at an MTA board meeting Monday said the launch date had been pushed to May 21.

Agency spokesman Kevin Ortiz said that preparation for the service, including the installation of ticket machines, began this month and that the actual rollout of the service would begin next month.

Click here for the complete report.

I have a feeling this service will be a big hit for riders on a corridor that sees a good share of riders. Hopefully this helps boost ridership even further as it has on other lines with the service.

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