Mass_Transit_June_2021 - 15

opening of the mega East Side
Access project, when LIRR Main
Line service begins into Grand
Central Terminal.
Back in 2015, at a press conference
to kick off the environmental
process for the yard
project, then-LIRR President
Patrick Nowakowski called the
yard a hub for the LIRR, noting
it is where the railroad's electrification
ends and diesel service
begins. He also called the facility
a key to the railroad's service to
Suffolk County, New York.
While the New Mid-Suffolk
Electric Yard holds a vital role
for current and future LIRR Main
Line capacity and service reliability,
the construction and expansion
of the yard is a worthy tale to tell.
The yard project nearly doubled
the number of storage tracks that
will support an almost 50 percent
increase in service. Additionally,
the project saw the construction
" Despite the many hurdles
presented by the pandemic, RCC
was very fortunate to continue
construction safely on the Mid-Suffolk
Electric Yard regardless of unforeseen
shutdowns and restrictions. "
FRANK SPINOZZA, P.E., project manager, RCC
of a new 32,000-square-foot employee
facility.
President of MTA Construction
& Development Janno Lieber
said the project contributes to a
more flexible and reliable railroad,
while LIRR President Phil
Eng said the facility " is an example
of how [the] LIRR is a driver of
long-term economic sustainability
and growth. "
The project was included in
MTA's 2010-2014 Capital Plan and
saw a $108-million design-build
contract awarded to Railroad Construction
Company, Inc. (RCC), in
December 2017, with heavy construction
starting in March 2018.
The Build
The New Mid-Suffolk Electric
Yard, formerly known as
Ronkonkoma Yard, is situated
east of the LIRR Ronkonkoma
Train Station and north of Long
Island MacArthur Airport. The
train yard prior to construction
was 100 percent utilized for
morning and evening peak services.
It included an employee
facility, 12 storage tracks that
could each hold a 12-car train
consist, provided interior car
cleaning and servicing, as well
as mandatory Federal Railroad
Administration inspections.
The expanded yard includes an
Metropolitan Transportation Authority/Long Island Rail Road
additional 11 new storage tracks,
each long enough to accommodate
a 12-car train consist, a new
employee facility, new AC and DC
substations and new supporting
JUNE 2021 | MassTransitmag.com | Mass Transit | 15
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