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Penn Station’s summer of hell will officially end next week

Written by
Clayton Guse

Commuters of New York, rejoice (sort of). 

Amtrak announced that regular train service will resume at Penn Station on Tuesday, September 5, after eight weeks of emergency construction on tracks and interlocking mechanisms at the transit hub. The construction followed several derailments at the station last spring, and it was projected to be so bad that Governor Andrew Cuomo said it would lead to a “summer of hell.” 

NJ Transit, Long Island Rail Road and Amtrak all operated on revised schedules during the construction, which began on July 10. Some discounts were offered to affected riders, and others saw little to no change in their daily commutes. In any case, the news that the track work will be completed on time ought to bring a sigh of relief to the 600,000-plus people who rely on Penn Station every day. 

While the summer of hell might be over, construction at the station will continue into next summer. Amtrak says that most of the work will take place on weekends and will cause “minimal impacts to service or disruptions to customers,” but we'll believe that when we see it. 

But now that the emergency repairs are complete, perhaps transit advocates can start pushing for a realistic, long-term fix for Penn Station. I mean, there are plenty of plans out there. 

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