LIRR Announces Timetable Changes Due to Amtrak’s Work to Renew Penn Station Tracks

Eight out of 184 rush hour trains to be rerouted; Five trains to be added beginning January 2018; Additional cars on five trains to Penn Station

LIRR to maintain capacity into Penn Station
December 11, 2017

As a result of Amtrak’s previously announced track work at Penn Station to take place beginning January 5, MTA Long Island Rail Road today announced that it will reroute five of the 98 morning rush hour trains that normally go to Penn Station and three of the 86 evening rush hour trains that normally depart from Penn Station.

To reduce the impact of these diversions, the LIRR is adding five trains before or after rush hours -- two in the morning and three in the afternoon/evening. The LIRR is also adding cars to five trains to increase seating capacity. In addition, two evening rush hour trains will be combined with alternative trains that depart within six to 11 minutes and serve all affected stations.

“With five percent of rush hour trains being affected compared with 20 percent during Amtrak’s intensive work at Penn this past summer, this will have a significantly smaller impact than the one felt this past summer. We are committed to providing our customers with exemplary service and travel options despite this small disruption. We are maintaining capacity by lengthening select trains and adding trains just before and just after rush hours when we have available timeslots,” said LIRR President Patrick Nowakowski.

Customers should look to timetables effective Monday, January 8, for details. Other rush hour trains may have scheduling changes of one to two minutes, or may have station stops adjusted to accommodate connections.

Service details by branch follow.

Babylon Branch

The LIRR will add a new train departing Freeport at 5:43 a.m. and stopping at Baldwin, Rockville Centre and Jamaica and arriving at Penn Station at 6:24 a.m.

The 6:56 a.m. train from Wantagh, which currently stops at Bellmore and Merrick before running express to Penn Station, will add a stop at Jamaica to allow for connecting service to Penn Station, then will continue to Atlantic Terminal, where it will arrive at 7:45 a.m.

The LIRR will add two cars to the 7:35 a.m. train from Babylon making all stops to Seaford then running express to Jamaica and Penn Station. This train will be lengthened to 12 cars, from the usual 10, adding more than 200 extra seats.

The 7:41 a.m. train from Merrick, which currently stops at Freeport and Baldwin before running express to Penn Station, will add a stop at Jamaica to allow customers to change for connecting service to Penn Station, then will continue to Hunterspoint Avenue, where it will arrive at 8:25 a.m.

The 8:25 a.m. train from Freeport, which currently stops at Baldwin, Rockville Centre and Jamaica en route to Penn Station, will be rerouted to Atlantic Terminal, where it will arrive at 9:07 a.m. Connecting service is available at Jamaica.

The LIRR will add two cars to the 4:34 p.m. train from Penn Station, running express to Seaford then making all stops to Babylon, lengthening the train to 12 cars from the usual 10, adding more than 200 extra seats.

To provide a later departure time for customers using Hunterspoint Avenue and traveling on the Babylon, Hempstead, Long Beach and Ronkonkoma Branches, the LIRR will add a new train departing Hunterspoint Avenue at 7:02 p.m. and stopping at Rockville Centre and Baldwin en route to arriving at Freeport at 7:42 p.m. This train makes connections at Jamaica for trains bound for Babylon, Hempstead, Long Beach and Ronkonkoma.

Far Rockaway Branch

The 8:10 a.m. train from Far Rockaway, which currently makes all local stops to Valley Stream, then Jamaica, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills and Penn Station, will be rerouted to Hunterspoint Avenue, where it will arrive at 9:04 a.m. This train will not stop at Kew Gardens or Forest Hills. Connecting service is available at Jamaica.

The train that currently originates at 5:32 p.m. at Penn Station and terminates at Far Rockaway at 6:24 p.m., will instead originate at Jamaica at 5:52 p.m. Customers at Penn Station can connect with this train by boarding the 5:23 p.m. Long Beach Branch train or the 5:24 p.m. train to Freeport and changing at Jamaica.

Hempstead Branch

The 5:38 p.m. train from Penn Station, due into Hempstead at 6:36 p.m., will originate at Atlantic Terminal at 5:47 p.m. Customers from Penn Station can connect with this train by boarding the 5:33 p.m. train to Hicksville and changing at Jamaica.

The 7:05 p.m. train from Penn Station, due into Hempstead at 7:56 p.m., will originate at Atlantic Terminal at 7:10 p.m. Customers from Penn Station can connect with this train by boarding the 7:08 p.m. Babylon Branch train and changing at Jamaica.

Long Beach Branch

The 8:03 a.m. train from Long Beach, making all local stops to Lynbrook before running express to Penn Station, will add a stop at Jamaica to allow for connecting service to Penn Station, then will continue to Atlantic Terminal, where it will arrive at 8:54 a.m.

The LIRR will add two cars to the 8:08 a.m. train from Long Beach, making all local stops to Jamaica, then Woodside and Penn Station. The train will be lengthened to 12 cars from the usual 10, adding more than 200 seats.

Port Jefferson Branch

The 5:06 p.m. train from Penn Station, which runs express to Syosset then stops at Cold Spring Harbor and Huntington, will not operate. Customers will be able to board the 5:17 p.m. train from Penn Station, which runs express to Westbury, then stops at Hicksville, Syosset, Cold Spring Harbor and Huntington.

Port Washington Branch

The LIRR will add a new afternoon train departing Penn Station at 3:40 p.m., stopping at Woodside, then making all stops to Great Neck, where it will arrive at 4:15 p.m.

The 5:50 p.m. train from Penn Station, which runs express to Bayside, then stops at Douglaston, Little Neck and Great Neck, will not operate. Customers will be able to board the 5:56 p.m. train from Penn Station, which makes all local stops to Great Neck. The 5:56 p.m. train will have four cars added, lengthening the train to 12 cars from the usual eight, adding more than 400 seats.

The LIRR will add two cars to the 7:27 p.m. train from Penn Station, due into Port Washington at 8:04 p.m., lengthening the train to 12 cars from the usual 10, adding more than 200 seats.

Ronkonkoma Branch

The LIRR will add a new early morning train departing Farmingdale at 5:05 a.m. making local stops along the Main Line, and arriving at Penn Station at 6:00 a.m.

The LIRR will add a new early afternoon train departing Penn Station at 1:49 p.m., then stopping at Woodside, Jamaica, Mineola, Hicksville, Bethpage, and all stops to Ronkonkoma, where it will arrive at 3:07 p.m.

Many Channels for Services Updates

Information about the planned service changes noted in this press release and all planned service changes is available through the LIRR’s real-time service information sources:

Email and text message service updates – Customers are urged to sign up to receive the alerts by visiting MyMTAAlerts.com. To avoid unwanted messages, a user can tailor the messages to the specific branch, and the specific times of day.

LIRR Train Time app – Customers who use the LIRR Train Time app will see up-to-the-minute status for each upcoming train at each station. As a caution, trains that start out their trips on time may experience delays en route.

MTA.info – The rail tab of the “Service Status” box at the left side of www.MTA.info is always the definitive source for the latest status for each branch, updated every minute. In addition, customers can visit www.mta.info/lirrto see special service notices in the upper center of the page.

@LIRR on Twitter – Twitter users can follow @LIRR to receive updates of a similar nature to the email and text alerts, shortened to fit Twitter’s format.

The above communications channels can be accessed while at home or on the go. For customers who are located at stations, the LIRR will post the latest service updates on digital signs at station platforms and will make audio announcements over public address systems, and on-board announcements made by train crews.

For those who prefer the telephone, information is available from the LIRR’s Customer Service Center by calling 511, the New York State Travel Information Line, and saying: “Long Island Rail Road” Those who are deaf or hard of hearing can use their preferred service provider for the free 711 relay to reach the LIRR at 511.