Queens Bound Service Returns To N Line

Residents at a number of Queens-bound N Train stations will rejoice as of this coming Monday when they reopen for service after a lengthy closure due to a multi-million renovation project. Here is more via the official press release I received:

N Train stations in Brooklyn will reopen for Manhattan-bound service on Monday, May 22, following extensive renovations to platforms, stairways, lighting, canopies and the track infrastructure, which will provide safer station environments and more reliable rides for thousands of customers who use the Sea Beach  Line.

The Manhattan-bound platforms at Fort Hamilton Pkwy, New Utrecht Av, 18 Av, 20 Av, Kings Hwy, Avenue U and 86 St will reopen for service at 5 a.m. on May 22.  The Manhattan-bound platforms at the 8 Av and Bay Pkwy stations, which had temporary platforms installed during the work, will also reopen.

The nine stations, which serve a total of nearly 53,000 weekday customers, will have new accessibility-compliant platforms, brighter lighting, new stairs and new paint. Some platforms will feature new canopies with architectural finishes, new windscreens or new glass fiber-reinforced concrete wall panels.  When the entire $395.7 million renovation is complete, every station will feature new artwork and two stations will be fully ADA accessible.

“These stations and right-of-way opened in the 1910s and have been in heavy daily use for more than a century.  It’s a vital Brooklyn corridor that needs to be brought into a state of good repair with new amenities and technology such as an upgraded communications system. When the work is finished at all nine stations and the tracks that connect them, our customers will see brighter, cleaner and safer stations and experience a smoother, more reliable ride, while our mobility impaired customers will be able to access that part of the Sea Beach line by using new ramps and new elevators,” said Ronnie Hakim, MTA Interim Executive Director.

The station renovations include improved platforms and overpasses, new stairways and handrails, repairs to canopies and columns, new paint, the rehabilitation of the stations’ historic head house entrances and fare control areas, enhanced safety features, new artwork commissioned by MTA Arts & Design and upgraded communications systems.  At 8 Av, two ramps will be added for full accessibility compliance, and four elevators will be installed at New Utrecht Av for access from the street level to the platforms.

Work was scheduled on Manhattan-bound platforms and tracks to minimize disruptions for customers who could use Coney Island-bound platforms for service to those stations. With the renovation’s first phase completed, work will begin on the Coney Island-bound platforms and track infrastructure in July 2017. A specific date will be announced later, with detailed travel alternatives that will be similar to the Manhattan-bound service changes. These service changes will include temporary platforms at the 8 Av and Bay Pkwy stations that were also used during the Manhattan-bound service changes. Customers may also take the  or  lines to Coney Island.

The renovation project was funded through the 2010-2014 MTA Capital Program. Although this project predates Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s mandate to use design-build methods to decrease construction timelines and improve efficiency in all MTA capital projects going forward, MTA New York City Transit worked closely with the project’s two contractors to deliver the work quickly and will continue to do so for the remainder of the project. John P. Picone Inc. is rehabilitating the six stations between 8 Av and Bay Pkwy, and Skanska USA is responsible for the rehabilitation of Kings Hwy, Avenue U and 86 St. The entire 9-station project is expected to take approximately four years, with full completion expected in late 2018.

I will try to get out to the stations in the coming weeks to see how the work came out.

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Service Diversions 05-12-17

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

Make sure to follow @TransitBlogger on Twitter as I am using it more often. Also if you are into indie music make sure to follow @IndMusicReview & @SurgeFM!

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Cops Arrest MTA Employee

Cops have arrested a 63 year old MTA employee due to sexually harassing a 19 year old female subway rider. Rocco Parascandola & Thomas Tracy of the New York Daily News have more in this report:

Cops arrested an MTA employee they say sexually abused a 19-year-old woman twice while working at a Brooklyn subway station, officials said Friday.

Cops said on Wednesday 63-year-old Mohammad Talukder groped the woman, who is an Orthodox Jew, at the 18th Ave. F train stop in Borough Park.

His victim claimed that every time she passed through the station on her way home from work, Talukder would harass her — offering her gifts, cigarettes and money to go on a date with him.

After being repeatedly rebuffed, Talukder allegedly grabbed the woman when she exited the train about 7:30 p.m. April 18 and forced her to a section of the platform under construction. Once he had her alone, he lifted up her shirt and molested her, according to cops.

The woman later told cops she didn’t use the station for a week after that but returned on Wednesday. Once again Talukder grabbed her, this time groping her and kissing her neck, according to police.

The woman ran home and told her boyfriend, who called police.

Responding officers found Talukder still in the station and arrested him for sex abuse.

I am glad that this disgusting pervert was arrested as it is never okay to sexually abuse anyone. I would like to believe that he will never work for the MTA again after this either. How stupid could he be to lose a good paying job over being a complete pervert.

Lastly I am not going to lie, when I read about the boyfriend calling the cops when told about the incident, my first thought was why in the world did he not go down there & confront this man? No way I would not have gone down there & dealt with him personally if it happened to my girlfriend.

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Metro North To Repair Prospect Hill Bridge

The MTA Metro-North has announced that they will be rebuilding the Prospect Hill Road Bridge via a $9.5M project funded by its 2015-2019 Capital Program. Here is more via the official press release:

MTA Metro-North Railroad today announced that it will rebuild and reopen the Prospect Hill Road Bridge in Southeast through a $9.5 million investment made possible by the MTA’s 2015-2019 Capital Program. The 270-foot-long bridge, which was built in 1910, is located just south of the Southeast station; it carries Prospect Hill Road over the Harlem Line tracks and parts of Metro-North’s Brewster Yard.

The MTA’s 2015-2019 Capital Program, secured by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, calls for the investment of $29.4 billion for the renewal, enhancement or expansion of the region’s transportation infrastructure, is the largest capital program in the MTA’s history.

The 107-year-old bridge, which is presently closed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic, has been deemed beyond the point of repair. On Wednesday, the MTA Board approved a contract to the firm Halmar International for the design and construction of the replacement bridge.

The first element of the reconstruction will involve the demolition and removal of the bridge, piers, abutments and roadway approaches, as well as clearing trees, shrubs, stumps and rubbish from the future right-of-way. Utility poles will be excavated, removed and re-installed for structural work; crews will then construct new utilities, including communications, signals, and power. When this work is finished, the stage will be set for crews to install new abutments, piers, bridge substructure and superstructure, roadway approaches, sidewalk, striping, signage, guide rails, fencing, retaining walls, grading and drainage. Metro-North estimates the project will take approximately twenty months to complete.

At the direction of Governor Cuomo, Metro-North issued a design-build contract to expedite the project. Design-build contracts call for a single team of contractors to be responsible for both designing and building an entire project in order to ensure that coordination is seamless, and that work is completed in the shortest possible time frame.

Metro-North Railroad President Joseph Giulietti said: “Metro-North has been working diligently with the Town of Southeast to rebuild the Prospect Hill Bridge. The bridge has been a key component of the town’s infrastructure for over a century, and funds from the MTA’s Capital Program will help maintain it well into the future. We’re pleased that a new Prospect Hill Bridge will soon be a reality for Putnam residents.”

Representative Sean Patrick Maloney said: “Anyone who lives in eastern Putnam knows the congestion and traffic caused by the out-of-commission Prospect Hill Bridge – I am glad to say those days are over. Using a combination of federal dollars and support from MTA and our local community we are investing in rebuilding and reopening the bridge, which will create more economic activity in the area and make life easier for drivers and residents. This announcement is a win-win.”

New York State Senator Terrence Murphy said: “The replacement of the 100-year-old Prospect Avenue Bridge has been a long time coming. The MTA and the local community are to be commended for working together to solve the difficult issue of financing the project. Replacing the bridge will improve the flow of traffic along Route 6, which will enhance the quality of life for local residents.”

Assemblyman Kevin Byrne said: “The rebuilding of the Prospect Hill Road Bridge is much welcomed news. It’s critical that New York keeps its infrastructure strong and running. This project will be an asset for the residents of Southeast and Putnam County.”

Putnam County Executive, MaryEllen Odell said: “The news about the reopening of the Prospect Road Bridge is very exciting for the people of Southeast and Putnam County. I would like to thank the MTA leadership for their partnership and their hard work in making this project a reality.”

Town of Southeast Supervisor, Tony Hay said: “A bridge long taken for granted by many over the years, has proved in its absence how important it is to the vitality of our community. Replacing the former decades-old ‘rickety bridge’ with a state-of-the-art bridge will restore a valuable piece of infrastructure within our community. We look forward to its construction and reopening.”

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Metro North Restores Service To 2 Stations

Metro North riders at the Philipse Manor and Scarborough Stations can rejoice as the agency will be restoring service back to these two stations later today. Here is more via the official press release:

MTA Metro-North Railroad today announced it will restore regularly scheduled reverse peak train service to and from Philipse Manor and Scarborough Stations on Monday, May 1. The railroad completed Superstorm Sandy Restoration work that took the section of track between the stations out service, so substitute bus service is no longer required. Metro-North worked closely with contractors to avoid inconveniencing customers, and there will be no future Hudson Line substitute bus service for trains at these stations due to Superstorm Sandy restoration work.

The seven miles of track from north of Tarrytown station to south of Croton Harmon Bridge had been taken out of service last August to support the railroad’s on-going Superstorm Sandy Restoration work. During the nine month outage, contractors made crucial infrastructure improvements along the right of way, including: elevating equipment platforms, and replacing power cables, switches and snow melter systems.

Following Superstorm Sandy, Metro-North is restoring signal and communications systems across 30 miles of the Lower Hudson Line. The railroad awarded a $190 million joint-venture, design build contract for the Hudson Line Sandy Restoration project to Judlau Contracting, TC Electric and URS.AECOM.  The three firms joined forces to work on the project as one design-build team. Metro-North anticipates the completion date for this phase of the Superstorm Sandy restoration work will be January 2018.

Metro-North issued the design-build contract to expedite the project. Design-build contracts call for a single team of contractors – in this instance, three contractors acting as one entity – to be responsible for both designing and building an entire project in order to ensure that coordination is seamless, and that work is completed in the shortest possible time frame.

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