NEW YORK - It’s the completion of a long ride for the LIRR’s third track.
Over the past four years of construction, the $2.6 billion mega project that for decades was a source of debate, provided jobs to some 1,300 people, all of whom worked with one goal in mind, to ease a bottleneck that often resulted in delays.
"In Westbury alone, it’ll go from 64 trains on weekdays to 95," Governor Kathy Hochul said. "We’re going to have fewer cars on the road, more reliable transit options, 53 reverse peak trains every weekday."
The new track which stretches nearly 10 miles from Floral Park to Hicksville will boost service by 40 percent and offer reverse commuters added convenience.
Some have paid a higher price for progress. Neighbors endured the noise and dealt with congestion during construction along the route. But officials call it a game changer when it comes to the bigger picture.
"Seven bridge replacements, eight grade eliminations, five station renewals, on time and under budget," said MTA Chair Janno Lieber.
This latest accomplishment is part of a multi billion project to transform and modernize the LIRR including station enhancements and experiences on the trains.
"You can charge your cellphone, more ADA accessibility, more cameras for safety, benches and longer platforms," Hochul said.
Main line expansion work including upgrades at some stations is expected to continue into the spring.