Third track of LIRR expansion project completed in New York

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The third track portion of the (Long Island Rail Road) LIRR expansion project in New York is finally complete. This newly constructed 9.8-mile track cuts across Nassau County, stretching from Floral Park to Hicksville. However, this is just one part of the entire approximately $2.6 billion LIRR project.

Construction on the LIRR expansion project began in 2019 with the aim of reducing congestion and improving rail networks. Consequently, the new Floral Park-Hicksville route was developed under (Metropolitan Transportation Authority) MTA’s $1.8 billion design-build contract.  Third Track Constructors was the joint venture group selected to work on the project. This development team comprises John P. Picone Inc., Halmar International , Dragados USA Inc, and CCA Civil Inc.

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Scope of the LIRR expansion project

In addition to the new track, the LIRR expansion project will involve the renewal of five LIRR stations. These stations include New Hyde Park, Merillon Avenue, Mineola, Carle Place and Westbury. It also involves removing at-grade railroad crossings, upgrades at seven railroad bridges, as well as station parking expansions. Other additional improvements for the project include new sound barriers and landscaping.

Government officials have said that only some additional minor work at the stations is remaining to complete the project’s scope. Based on their estimations, the $2.6 billion LIRR expansion project will be completed with a budget under $100 million. Furthermore, it’s also expected to increase statewide service by 41%, after the Grand Central Madison station and concourse opens.

The 700,000-square-foot, Grand Central Madison facility is currently being developed as part of an $11 billion East Side Access project. Other rail infrastructures are also being planned for East Side Access, including yard storage expansions, with new tunnels and bridges. These developments will also support the LIRR expansion project’s new route in and out of Manhattan.

MTA’s Construction & Development President, Jamie Torres-Springer, said the LIRR’s Third Track will set the standard for future MTA C&D projects. Springer also pointed out that the LIRR expansion project was designed to minimize disruption to nearby communities. Throughout the 9.8-mile-long work zone, he said their team maintained service with hundreds of trains running along that route daily.