Monday, 10 July 2017

I Have Confident With My Plans To Ease Transit Problems Caused During Penn Station Repairs - MTA Boss

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On the eve of the first day of the Summer of Hell for rail commuters, the head of the MTA said he was “confident” about measures to reduce the inconvenience caused by emergency repairs at Penn Station.

MTA Chairman Joe Lhota said two cars will be added to each Long Island Rail Road train and that a “war room” of top officials would monitor service to quickly make modifications to service as needed.

“I’m confident,” Lhota said.

“There will be enough seats for everybody as if it was a normal day. It will just be a different time and we’re encouraging all of our passengers, all of our customers to look at the schedule and figure out what works for best for them.

The MTA boss spoke at Jamaica Station in Queens, where he encouraged LIRR commuters to transfer to trains bound for Brooklyn’s Atlantic Terminal or Hunterspoint Ave. in Long Island City, Queens, if possible.

“These are unique circumstances. We’ve been told to reduce the number of trains going into Penn Station, and as part of that, we think people should look at alternatives,” he said.

Riders are bracing for headaches during the Summer of Hell, which begins Monday. But the MTA says it can manage the troubles caused during construction at Penn Station.

Nearly two months of emergency repairs have been ordered by Amtrak, which controls Penn Station. The work requires a 20% reduction in trains to the critical Midtown rail hub. The reduction in NJ Transit and LIRR service is expected to be felt on subways and highways.

“This is going to be every day this summer. We will be evaluating what’s going on. It’s very important that we make this as efficient and as effective as possible,” Lhota said.

Gov. Cuomo, meanwhile, announced several measures meant to help commuters changing their routines by taking the bus or driving. All nonemergency construction will be suspended from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. and all lanes will be open on major roadways in the New York City area.

“Amtrak’s emergency repairs at Penn Station will have a ripple effect across the entire transportation system,” said Cuomo, who coined the catch phrase Summer of Hell.

“By suspending construction and implementing critical roadwork changes, we are taking action to ensure New Yorkers can get where they need to go as quickly and easily as possible.”

People stand near a LIRR display on Sunday alerting commuters of pending rail work at Atlantic Terminal in New York.

But some commuters at Penn Station on Sunday were still trying to figure out how to handle the looming hassle.

Alex Caiola, 61, had just begun considering alternate routes to his office at Newark Airport — and none looked good.

“I am angry. I don’t know how I’m going to get around. I mean, things were bad before these Amtrak repairs,” Caiola said.

“In essence, I will be needing a tent outside of the airport.”

Zacharie Theodore, a 21-year-old student from Irvington, N.J., said he would allow an hour extra to arrive at work on time.

MTA boss: Penn Station commuters should try other travel options
“I just hope it’s worth it, to be honest,” he said of the emergency repairs. 

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Author: verified_user

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