Since the summer of 2017, Amtrak has been working on a series of track renewal projects inside Penn Station as part of its Infrastructure Renewal program. Engineering crews began replacing turnouts over the summer and have since changed two tracks to improve Penn Station’s performance and reliability in the long term.

Over the years, Amtrak has continuously maintained the aging instrastructure, some of which dates back to the 1970s. Full replacement is now needed to modernize stations and equipment on the Northeast Corridor. Recently, we had the opportunity to take a look at the progress of Track 15, which Amtrak has been working on since January 5.

Although a series of single-track closures within Penn Station will occur through May 28, 2018, most of the infrastructure renewal will take place on the weekends in order to minimize the number of trains and commuters affected by the restoration. The projected is expected to be completed by June 2018, with each session of repairs lasting six to eight weeks.

Amtrak has already completed the concrete demolition of Track 15, and crews are now working on laying and welding new rail. Many rails have been in use for over 30 years and were not constructed with such high use in mind. Prior to demolition, 56 trains ran daily on Track 15, from Amtrak, New Jersey Transit, and Long Island Rail Road.

After the placement of the third rail on Track 15, Amtrak will begin the renewal of Track 18 and will replace three turnouts in “C” Interlocking, which directs Amtrak and Long Island Rail Road trains to routes heading east and to Sunnyside Yard.

Here are Amtrak schedule changes that will take place during the restoration:

  • Amtrak is cancelling Northeast Regional Trains 110 from Washington, D.C. (WAS) to New York Penn Station (NYP) and 127 from NYP to WAS
  • Northbound Keystone Train 640 is terminating at Newark Penn Station
  • Southbound Keystone Train 643 is originating at Newark Penn Station
  • Southbound Train 173 is stopping at Newark Airport
  • Southbound Trains 129, 193 and 653 will all have earlier departure times.
  • Train 170 is also departing WAS early, is stopping at North Philadelphia and Cornwells Heights and resuming its schedule from Trenton

Stay up-to-date with the renewal process with weekly progress reports on the official Amtrak website. Also check out photos of Amtrak’s recently refreshed women’s bathrooms, which were restored earlier this year, and join us for our Tour of the Remnants of Penn Station:

Tour of the Remnants of Penn Station

Next, Check out the The Top 10 Secrets of the Original Pennsylvania Station in NYC or our Untapped Guide to Penn Station.

 Amtrak, Long Island Railroad, penn station

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