Metro-North wraps up track project to improve safety, speed for two lines

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(Woodlawn Junction: Courtesy of Wayne Koch)

MTA Metro-North Railroad recently completed an “extraordinary track reconstruction effort” that began in July 2013 on track through the central Bronx that’s used by New Haven and Harlem line trains.

The project resulted in a safer, smoother ride and improved operating speeds, Metro-North officials said in a press release.

All four tracks on a six-mile stretch from Melrose to Woodlawn now accommodate speeds up to 75 mph, resulting in improved performance and reliability in time for a schedule change that went into effect May 11, they said. Trains were limited to 60 mph prior to the start of the track reconstruction project.

“This project began out of an intensive focus on track safety that led to rigorous inspections using the most advanced rail inspection technologies that exist,” said Metro-North Railroad President Joseph Giulietti.

During the project, workers removed 6,157 concrete ties; installed 7,537 new wood ties; trenched 6,350 feet of the right-of-way shoulder or between tracks to improve drainage; installed new rail on various curves; welded rail joints and installed new insulated joints; excavated and removed 4,995 cubic yards of mud created by poor drainage along the track; and removed debris, garbage and graffiti on railroad property.