New York

Amtrak: Repair Work at Penn Station Is Done, Rebuilding of Bathrooms to Come

What to Know

  • Amtrak and the LIRR will return to their normal weekday schedules on Tuesday, Sept. 5
  • The MTA said discounted fares, as well as alternate ferry and bus services, will end on Friday, Sept. 1
  • NJ Transit also said that service will return to normal on Sept. 1

Amtrak officials said Thursday that the summer repair work at Penn Station is done following a nearly two-month overhaul, infamously dubbed the "summer of hell," that forced rairloads that share the busy transit hub to curtail service. 

Amtrak co-CEO Wick Moorman said Thursday that the repairs were completed "on time, on budget and most importantly, safely."

Normal service into and out of Penn Station will resume Tuesday for Amtrak, New Jersey Transit and the Long Island Rail Road. All three railroads reduced service when the repair work started in early July.

The repairs centered on the sorting mechanism that routes trains between New York and New Jersey as well as trains to the LIRR's West Side railyard.

Amtrak officials say additional repair work still to be completed will be done on nights and weekends and won't affect service.

The officials also said they have no plans to keep Empire Service (which travels upstate to Albany) at Grand Central Terminal, where it was temporarily diverted during the overhaul. Empire Service will return to Penn Station next week. 

Officials also announced they're looking to start rebuilding restrooms in the transit hub in the next few weeks, a project they hope to finish by the end of this year. The station's waiting areas will also get a makeover. 

Moorman said Amtrak workers installed 897 track ties, 1,100 feet (335 meters) of rail, 176 yards (161 meters) of concrete and four of the track crossover structures called complex diamond crossings.

Two derailments and other problems in the spring prompted Amtrak to speed up the schedule for the repairs, which initially were to be completed over a few years.

In an interview with NBC 4 New York earlier this month, Amtrak Chief Operating Officer Scot Naparstek said he expected to have full service restored on time, or even ahead of schedule. He said commuters should expect an on-time service of more than 90 percent.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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