During this festive season it’s always a good idea to make a list (and check it twice)!
2021 has been another successful year for the LIRR Expansion Project, and the last 12 months have brought us one step closer to finishing this transformational infrastructure project for the region.
To highlight some of the progress, the countdown below offers a Top 10 of major accomplishments. There is still work to be done, but it’s exciting to take a step back and reflect on these achievements. Every day we’re focused on improving commutes, enhancing communities, and creating a better Long Island.
On behalf of the LIRR Expansion Project team, we wish you happy holidays and a healthy new year.
LIRR Expansion Project Milestones
10 miles of new track being installed along the Main Line as part of the LIRR Expansion Project. It’s actually 9.8 miles if we’re being specific. In 2021 alone, approximately 13,000 linear feet of the new third track was built, accounting for nearly 2.5 miles.
9 miles of resilient utility poles. These storm-hardened permanent poles will improve the overall resiliency of the system. To date, crews have installed 97 steel poles (27 steel poles in 2021).
8 out of 8 grade crossings eliminated as part of the project. In February of this year, the Main Street grade crossing elimination was completed, followed by Willis Avenue in September. These were preceded by Covert Avenue, South 12th Street, New Hyde Park Road, School Street, and Urban Avenue to improve motorist, pedestrian, and commuter safety.
7 bridge modification and replacement projects in total, including the completed S. Tyson Avenue Bridge, Plainfield Avenue Bridge, Nassau Boulevard Bridge, Glen Cove Road Bridge, Meadowbrook Parkway Bridge and Cherry Lane Bridge. Work on the Tanners Pond/Denton Avenue Bridge is expected to move forward in 2022.
6 substations delivered: G-19 New Cassel (which is already in service), G-13 Floral Park, G-17 Carle Place, G-14 New Hyde Park, G-16 Mineola, and G-18 Westbury. There are a total of 8 substations in the project. These substations will provide the additional power needed to operate trains as the LIRR system expands.
5 new features to upgrade stations along the LIRR corridor, including increased ADA accessibility, WiFi, improved platforms, landscaping, and charging stations.
We celebrated 2 major station enhancements in 2021—in Carle Place and Floral Park.
4 more stations underway. The New Hyde Park, Merillon Avenue, Mineola, and Westbury stations are progressing by the day. Station openings are notable not just for the addition of modern amenities, but also for increased accessibility and inclusion for riders who use ramps and elevators. With 7 elevator installations in 2021 alone and 6 more to go in the remaining stations, it’s clear that increased ADA accessibility is fundamental to the project’s success.
3 interlockings modified or replaced to date: New Nassau 1, New Nassau 3, and Park 2. Interlockings include a series of switches making it possible to move trains from one track to the other, helping to reduce congestion, improve safety and enhance the daily commute.
2 new parking structures completed this year. In August, the Westbury North Parking Structure was completed, and this month the Mineola Harrison Avenue garage opened.
1 year left on a revolutionary project that is transforming Long Island’s transportation system by the day. The journey from point A to point B will be more pleasant, smooth, and enjoyable for the hardworking commuter and occasional rider alike. From Floral Park to Hicksville, innovative improvements in stations, communities, and along the tracks are progressing, offering better safety, expanded ADA accessibility, and more resilient infrastructure for decades to come.