Senate Majority Leader John J. Flanagan and Republican Senators delivered $40 million in new funding to the Long Island Rail Road to advance a major component of the LIRR Forward plan that will implement Centralized Train Control, an essential signal and communications system improvement.
The $40 million, secured by Senate Majority Leader Flanagan and Senators Elaine Phillips, Carl Marcellino, Phil Boyle, Kemp Hannon and Ken LaValle, will fund the LIRR’s implementation of phase 2 of Centralized Train Control and signal tower consolidation, integral to keeping trains on schedule, responding quickly to emergencies and improving service.
Centralized Train Control is a major LIRR initiative that will consolidate separate signal tower activities into a central train control operation that should allow for improved movement of trains based on “real time” information and better information to customers.
Although the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s current 2015-2019 Capital Program does not include funding for the full implementation of the Centralized Train Control on the LIRR, the new system remains a linchpin in the plan to end the frustration and delays that riders continually face. Therefore, this $40 million from Long Island Republican Senators will allow the LIRR to move forward immediately with the essential implementation of CTC.
“LIRR riders are tired of cancelled trains and poor on-time performance that only gets reliably worse. This $40 million from Republican Senators puts the LIRR back on track to meet the expectations of their ridership who deserve a system that works. I look forward to working with my colleagues to make sure that this project moves full speed ahead,” said Majority Leader Flanagan.
"Commuting is a way of life for tens of thousands of Long Islanders - and this way of life is in need of a major overhaul. LIRR riders have been facing the worst rail service in nearly two decades and my Long Island Republican colleagues and I are committed to providing the funding needed to make improvements in service,” said Senator Phillips.
“We all know about LIRR delays, derailments and dysfunction. Thankfully, today we made a significant investment that will allow for overdue technological improvements to the system. These funds will enhance reliability and the overall experience for the consumer. Updating the antiquated LIRR infrastructure will help every rider arrive at their destination safely and hopefully, on time,” said Senator Marcellino.
“The Long Island Rail Road is the life line for many to get to and from work each day. It is essential that we not only improve train service and reliability, but also increase accessibility and make technological improvements. I applaud the work the MTA has done thus far on train stations such as Farmingdale and Wantagh, but additional funding is necessary to ensure all Long Islanders are receiving the service they deserve,” said Senator Hannon.
“This is further proof of why we need to maintain a Republican majority on Long Island in the New York State Senate. By providing this necessary funding, we are able to maintain funding for the MTA and the Long Island Railroad,” said Senator Boyle.
“I am pleased we were able to provide the financial support necessary to improve service and operations for the commuters who rely on the LIRR for transportation needs,” said Senator Ken LaValle.