Home PANYNJ A summer Newark AirTrain outage and weekend service changes

A summer Newark AirTrain outage and weekend service changes

by Benjamin Kabak

Heading to Newark Airport after May 1? Boy, are you in luck. From May 1 through approximately July 15, the Newark AirTrain will be shut down, and Amtrak and New Jersey Transit trains will not stop at the Newark Liberty International Airport stop. To access the airport, the Port Authority first, sadly, urges people to drive. Second, the PA notes that shuttle buses will provide service from Newark Penn Station. (For more details, check out the Port Authority’s website. This is a pretty big deal.)


From 11:45 p.m. Friday, April 25 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Manhattan-bound 1 trains run express from 145 St to 96 St due to steel repairs from 125 St to 133 St.


From 11:45 p.m. Friday, April 25 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Bronx-bound 1 trains run express from Chambers St to 14 St due to Mulry Square vent plan upgrade.


From 11:45 p.m. Friday, April 25 to 6:30 a.m. Sunday, April 27, and from 11:45 p.m. Sunday, April 27 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Bronx-bound 2 trains run express from Chambers St to 14 St due to Mulry Square vent plan upgrade.


From 11:45 p.m. Friday, April 25 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28 Bronx-bound 4 trains skip Fulton St due to Fulton Street Transit Center completion work.


From 5:45 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Saturday, April 26, and from 7:45 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Sunday, April 27, Bronx-bound 5 trains skip Fulton St due to Fulton Street Transit Center completion work.


From 7:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Saturday, April 26, and from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Sunday, April 27, 6 trains run every 16 minutes between 3 Av-138 St and Pelham Bay Park due to track panel installation at St Lawrence Av. The last stop for some Pelham Bay Park bound 6 trains is 3 Av-138 St.


From 11:45 p.m. Friday, April 25 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Flushing Main St-bound 7 trains run express between Mets-Willets Point and 74 St-Broadway due to CBTC signal work.


From 11:30 p.m. Friday, April 25 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, A trains are suspended between Jay St-MetroTech and Utica Av in both directions due to track tie renewal north of Hoyt-Schermerhorn. Transfer between A trains and free shuttle buses at Jay Street-MetroTech or Utica Av.


From 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Saturday, April 26, and Sunday, April 27, C trains are suspended between W 4 St Wash Sq and Euclid Av due track tie renewal north of Hoyt-Schermerhorn.


From 11:30 p.m. Friday, April 25 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Manhattan-bound E trains are rerouted on the via the F line after 36 St in Queens to W 4 St Wash Sq (E trains travel via the 63 St and 6 Av corridors, stopping at F stations) due to Sandy related work in the 53 Street tunnel. Free shuttle buses operate between Court Sq-23 St and 21 St-Queensbridge, stopping at Queens Plaza.


From 12:15 a.m. to 6:30 a.m., Saturday, April 26 and Sunday, April 27, and from 12:15 a.m. to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Jamaica Center-bound E trains run express from Queens Plaza to Forest Hills 71 Av due to tunnel lighting installation south of the Jackson Hts Roosevelt Av.


From 12:15 a.m. Saturday, April 26 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Queens-bound E trains skip 75 Av and Briarwood Van Wyck Blvd due to CPM signal modernization at Forest Hills 71 Av, and Kew Gardens Union Tpke.


From 9:45 p.m. Friday, April 25 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Queens-bound F trains are rerouted via the E line from Jackson Hts Roosevelt Av to 47-50 Sts Rock Ctr due to Second Avenue Subway work at Lexington Avenue.


From 12:15 a.m. Saturday, April 26 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Queens-bound F trains skip Briarwood Van Wyck Blvd and Sutphin Blvd due to CPM signal modernization at Forest Hills 71 Av and Kew Gardens Union Tpke.


From 3:45 a.m. Saturday, April 26 to 10:00 p.m. Sunday, April 27, Jamaica Center Parsons/Archer-bound J trains run express from Marcy Av to Broadway Junction due to track work from Flushing Av to Myrtle Av, and track repairs near Broadway Junction.


From 4:00 a.m. Saturday, April 26 to 10:00 p.m. Sunday, April 27, M trains run every 20 minutes due to track work from Flushing Av to Myrtle Av, and track repairs near Broadway Junction.


From 12:01 a.m. Saturday, April 26 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, Coney Island Stillwell Av-bound N trains run local between 36 St and 59 St due to track tie renewal south of 36 St.


From 6:30 a.m. to 12 midnight Saturday, April 26, and Sunday, April 27, Queens-bound R trains run express from Queens Plaza to Forest Hills 71 Av due to tunnel lighting installation south of Jackson Hts Roosevelt Av.


From 11:30 p.m. Friday, April 25 to 6:00 a.m. Sunday, April 27, and from 11:30 p.m. Sunday, April 27 to 5:00 a.m. Monday, April 28, R trains are suspended between 59 St and 36 St in Brooklyn due to track tie renewal south of 36 St.

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42 comments

Rebecca April 26, 2014 - 2:20 am

LOL I fly out of EWR on May 31 lucky me =D!

Reply
JJJ April 26, 2014 - 2:44 am

Hey guys, lets schedule the shutdown during the tourism season!

Also, lets reward people dealing with a ridiculous detour to Newark Penn by continuing to charge $5 for the shuttle bus!

Reply
Chris C April 26, 2014 - 8:27 am

Or how about do the work when the weather is better for construction works to take place.

Whatever time of year they do the work it will still cause disruption.

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Epson45 April 26, 2014 - 3:04 am

Just take NJ Transit bus #62 from Newark Penn Station for #1.50. http://www.njtransit.com/pdf/bus/T0062.pdf

Better then the rip off fare $5.50 AirTrain Newark which is crapping out often.

Port Authority dummies, making very smart decisions. ๐Ÿ™

Reply
Anon256 April 26, 2014 - 9:40 am

Charging for the shuttle bus seems bizarre, but on the other hand a free shuttle bus would seem better than the slow, cramped, expensive, infrequent-connections AirTrain.

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Beebo April 26, 2014 - 9:58 am

Why can’t they run the buses to the airport train station?

Reply
SEAN April 26, 2014 - 11:17 am

There’s no real road access to the EWR station.

Now would be a great time to double the parking rates at EWR & spin it as airport upgrades.

Reply
JJJJ April 26, 2014 - 2:03 pm

This certainly looks like a bus loop and loading area to me

http://goo.gl/maps/ZkGMo

Reply
pete April 26, 2014 - 6:24 pm

The access road to newark airport station is gated shut. Nobody but PA vehicles can drive upto the station. http://www.bing.com/maps/?v=2&.....orm=LMLTCC PA will not allow any Kiss and Ride to happen at Newark Rail station.

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JJJ April 26, 2014 - 7:54 pm

You do realize we’re talking about PA shuttle buses right? This isnt kiss and ride, its people transferring onto their shuttles.

Tower18 April 27, 2014 - 10:23 am

The larger problem actually appears to be that access to that service road is one-directional. You can only access from Southbound 1/9. A bus leaving the station can enter Newark Airport easily, but a bus leaving Newark Airport has no way to get to the station. So, easier to just go to Newark Penn.

SEAN April 27, 2014 - 11:44 am

Like I said… thereโ€™s no real road access to the EWR station.

JJJJ April 27, 2014 - 2:01 pm

???

http://goo.gl/maps/EgP9Z

Looks extremely painless.

3 minutes and no traffic from Terminal C, vs 10 + traffic to Newark Penn.

Tower18 April 26, 2014 - 10:15 am

What is wrong with these track ties north of Hoyt Schermerhorn that necessitates all these A/C suspensions in recent weekends and overnights? Seems like something else is going on.

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alek April 26, 2014 - 7:49 pm

The A/C track tie work was cancelled several time during the winter time due to the harsh winter snow. So they need to make up these cancelled work days.

Reply
Frank B April 26, 2014 - 10:57 am

Ahem… Punctuation. The first sentence should read:

Heading to Newark Airport after May 1? Because, boy, are you in luck!

I would also completely eliminate ‘because’.

Heading to Newark Airport after May 1? Boy, are you in luck!

Reply
Frank B April 28, 2014 - 1:50 am

Thanks for the grammatical correction. ๐Ÿ™‚

Reply
Phantom April 26, 2014 - 12:56 pm

Newark Airtrain is still fairly new. It should not be so poorly designed and or maintained that it needs to close for a long period.

This technology has proven to be a big planning mistake.

The tiny Airtrain cars are often painfully crowded now – what will they be like when PATH is extended to the Newark Airport station?

I now prefer the other airports for mass transit access — the M60 or Q70 bus via subway to LGA or the JFK Airtrain as opposed to this this terrible, fragile, inadequate Newark Airtrain connecting to NJ Transit connecting to the subway as an alternative.

It does not work. It cannot work. Tear it down and replace it with all buses if you must.

Reply
Kai B April 26, 2014 - 4:12 pm

Whenever I see a community discuss building a monorail I think of Airtrain EWR and its tiny cars and slow service. Traditional rail can accomplish things much better.

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JJJ April 26, 2014 - 7:56 pm

So you pick one terrible application as the flag bearer for the entire technology?

Whenever I hear people talk about cars I think of the Yugo and its tiny cars and slow speeds. Airplanes can accomplish things much better

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Kai B April 27, 2014 - 3:08 pm

There’s some kind of futuristic coolness in monorails that makes people suggest them as a transportation solution when there really is no reason. It does appear that you can accomplish the same goals with two tracks at a lower cost and/or great efficiency.

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Nathanael April 28, 2014 - 4:00 pm

Unfortunately, all the known applications of monorail have been terrible. Arguably the best is the one at DisneyWorld, and it’s expensive and slow for what it does, so *even Disney* has decided never to expand it.

Automated trains do work — the canonical examples are Vancouver SkyTrain and Docklands Light Rail. They, of course, run on a pair of steel rails just like any other trains.

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BruceNY April 28, 2014 - 8:54 pm

Have you heard of the Tokyo Monorail to Haneda Airport? It has been running reliably since 1964. That’s right–a half century.

Ned April 28, 2014 - 9:37 pm

Don’t forget JFK AirTrain, which is two-track and automated, and unlike EWR AT, is not the punchline of a cruel joke.

Eric April 30, 2014 - 6:02 am

A number of Asian countries have successfully used monorail. For example:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C.....il_Transit

Alon Levy April 26, 2014 - 8:47 pm

Yeah, what JJJ said. Monorail supporters oversell monorail’s advantages (straddle monorail is basically the same as elevated rail except with less visual impact), but in terms of performance it’s basically the same as conventional rail. There are uniquely shitty examples of every mode. In the late 1970s, both of the latest subway fleet orders in New York were defective; it says nothing about the viability of subway cars as a technology. As long as you avoid being BRT, in which case nearly all first-world examples are terrible, you’re fine.

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Bolwerk April 26, 2014 - 11:24 pm

Not using conventional rail is kind of a stupid choice even if you don’t have a preexisting system. Aren’t monorail implementations generally very proprietary? Today’s conventional rail implementations seem pretty standardized if you avoid things like JFK AirTrain.

But I guess I agree conceptually. That said, after more than a decade of at least lurking in these online transit discussions/debates, I gotta suspect the BRT-or-GTFO people basically are the monorail people from circa 2004.

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SEAN April 27, 2014 - 11:40 am

Not quite sure about your last point, but what I do know is there are a lot of hands in the BRT cookie jar. Not just spineless polls, but the oil & gas industry, bus manufacturers such as NewFlyer & supporting businesses. The problem is all those hands expect some sort of payment for a transit mode that isn’t much better than conventional bus service & almost always costs many more times than it should based on what the finished product looks like.

Bolwerk April 27, 2014 - 2:39 pm

I don’t really see anything mysterious about it. There is no political will to invest in infrastructure. BRT creates the illusion that there is no need to do so. Cheap up front and more operating jobs in the long-run. Who wins?

The only thing I can think of about BRT that might actually be sinister is the advocates for it almost never go after highway infrastructure. Turning SIRT’s North Shore into BRT is totally legit, but they wouldn’t dare try to take over some of the BQE – which would make way too much sense.

Kai B April 27, 2014 - 3:21 pm

Even AirTrain JFK is pretty standardized. It’s an installation of Bombardier Advanced Rapid Transit, which can be found all over the world.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B.....id_Transit

Bolwerk April 27, 2014 - 4:23 pm

I meant standard as in any company can follow the standards and (legally) supply the TA if they meet its needs.

So far as I know, ART is proprietary. The only vendor with a right to sell the systems is Bombardier.

Nathanael April 28, 2014 - 4:05 pm

AirTrain JFK is standard *enough* to be tolerable. A pair of steel rails, standard gauge, standard switches, fairly standard loading gauges.

It uses linear induction motors, which are non-standard but not proprietary. (And can be replaced with conventional rolling stock if necessary.)

It uses non-standard signalling, but signalling is unfortunately pretty non-standard these days. Again, the signalling can be replaced without ripping up the tracks.

Newark AirTrain needs to have the entire structure replaced in order to replace it with standard trains. That’s not good.

There used to be a monorail at San Diego Wild Animal Park. When it started to wear out, it was impossible to get replacement parts; so they just ripped it out entirely and replaced it with buses.

This doesn’t happen with trains, steel wheels on steel rails at standard gauge, because there’s *enough* standardization to get replacement parts.

Alon Levy April 28, 2014 - 9:29 pm

In Vancouver they’re actually concerned about SkyTrain vendor lock, which is why they built the Canada Line using different technology altogether.

Jonathan English April 29, 2014 - 6:07 pm

I had heard that when the bidding criteria for the Canada Line consortia were set up, they were barred from using the compatibility with the existing system as a positive factor because it would be seen to be unreasonably favouring the consortium that included Bombardier. I’m not sure if that’s right, though.

lawhawk April 28, 2014 - 9:15 am

It’s my understanding that the closure is so that they can repair the roadbed on which the Airtrain runs. It’s been pitted and the rubberized surface needs to be replaced/repaired (akin to the roadbed suffering from potholes). The Airtrain first opened in 1996, so we’re talking about 18 years of use. Not bad, but not great either.

It’s the timing that couldn’t be any worse than at the outset of the travel season, but the articles on the closure don’t seem to indicate why this couldn’t be done on nights/weekends when it would impose the least amount of disruption. My guess is that the kind of work couldn’t be completed overnight – needing time for the surface to cure, so they’ve got this complete disruption for 2+ months.

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Tower18 April 28, 2014 - 9:58 am

Just curious if anyone knows how long the rail/roadbed on the subway lasts? ie. if they replace rail and ties, etc., how long before that same section needs to be re-done?

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Nathanael April 28, 2014 - 4:30 pm

Rail has a different lifetime from ties. Rail lasts a REALLY long time, 50-100 years on straight track or gentle curves; sharp curves and switches wear out a lot faster (because they have additional stresses on them). Track has been lifted with manufacturing dates in the 19th century… and set aside for reuse on tourist lines!

A number of tourist and heritage lines have made no attempt to replace the rails — some dating from as early as the 1870s, when steel rails become common as a replacement for weaker wrought-iron rails.

These lines have had to replace *all* the ties.

The lifetime of ties depends on the type of ties and on ambient conditions (wet or dry, salty or not, etc.) — you want to use the right type of ties for the ambient conditions. (Chicago is switching to plastic ties in the tunnels where they tend to sit in puddles.)

Lifetime of ties varies from 5 years to 100 years!

The four types of ties in use are:
– steel
– concrete
– plastic / “composite”
– wood treated with nasty chemicals

Plain wood is also used occasionally, but has a short lifespan.

“Direct fixation” is often used on concrete bridges or in concrete-lined tunnels; here the tracks are attached directly to a slab of concrete, rather than using ties and ballast.

Wood doesn’t like getting wet.

Concrete doesn’t like getting salty.

Plastics are highly resistant to salt water, but not so great in dry hot climates where they can bake and crack.

Steel is extremely weather-resistant, but much harder to hold in place with ballast, which has made it hard to use for high-speed application. It’s more common to use the occasional steel tie for a special purpose.

Wood remains in use for nearly all switches; plastic is the only reasonable alternative. This is because switch ties need to have the track attached at strange, arbitrary points, so the “predrilled holes” used with concrete and steel ties would require custom casting, which isn’t worth it.

High speeds and high axle loads damage the ties faster, but this effect is more true of wood than of concrete and plastic and steel.

So, tie lifetime is a long complicated thing. On the subway it probably varies by line segment!

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Jerrold April 27, 2014 - 2:12 pm

So,it looks like our old friend Calatrava is still sucking blood around here! Now it turns out that he was paid half a million dollars for drawings for the Staten Island bridges that are under renovation.
The trouble is, those drawings were not solicited, and will not be used.

It’s like THIS idiotically impossible scenario:
Imagine if some writer were to submit an unsolicited manuscript to a publisher or a magazine. Then they decide NOT to publish it, but pay him a hefty fee anyway.

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Chris C April 27, 2014 - 8:33 pm

If you are referring to this

http://www.northjersey.com/new.....-1.1003825

(would have been helpful if YOU had provided a link to an article)

then blame the way the PA is run and inappropriate influence of politically appointed commissioners rather than the architect.

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Jerrold April 27, 2014 - 11:57 pm

But what business does he have being paid for something that was NOT solicited and will not be used?
I am not excusing the behavior of the commissioners and the politicians either.

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Eric April 27, 2014 - 8:19 pm

For what it’s worth, I saw an F running towards Coney Island on the G Crosstown on Saturday afternoon.

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Ned April 28, 2014 - 9:48 pm

Yeah, I was on train that did that Sunday PM. Definitely one of the more unlikely diversions (but thanks for the connectivity, IND!). I was trying to get to Manhattan from BK, and the conductor told everyone they “could get the A at Hoyt-Schermerhorn” which was technically untrue b/c of the A/C FastTrack work, although there was a shuttle bus (no thanks). All kinds of confusion. I walked to Nevins on the 2/3.

Reply

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