LIRR Double Track Work On Two March Weekends Affects Ronkonkoma Branch


During the weekends of March 3-4 and 10-11, from 12:50 a.m. Saturday through 12:46 a.m. on Monday each weekend, buses will substitute for train service on the single track of the Ronkonkoma Branch between Hicksville and Ronkonkoma as the Long Island Rail Road works to install a new crossover east of the Farmingdale platform, as well as perform track work along this entire corridor. Concurrently, construction will continue on the platform renovations at Wyandanch and Pinelawn stations.

This work will further advance the Double Track Project, which has provided hundreds of construction jobs and, upon completion, will improve service and reliability on the LIRR’s Ronkonkoma Branch. Over the past 25 years, ridership on the Ronkonkoma Branch has doubled—growing in popularity since the line was electrified in 1988—indicating the need for expansion. This initiative will also spur economic activity and improve LIRR service to Long Island MacArthur Airport.

The project will also aid in reducing delays in the event of a service disruption, as the 18-mile stretch between Ronkonkoma and Farmingdale currently only has one track available to both directions of train traffic. When an issue arises with a train, this stalls all other east and westbound trains because there is currently no way to circumnavigate the stalled train.

In January, the final five miles of track were laid for this project, which is scheduled for completion in August 2018. For the first time, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority used the New Track Construction (NTC) machine for this project, which installed track more than ten times faster than the MTA has ever been able to do before.

This weekend work will affect train service on the Ronkonkoma Branch, where customers will board buses for service to and from stations at Hicksville, Bethpage, Farmingdale, Pinelawn, Wyandanch, Deer Park, Brentwood, Central Islip and Ronkonkoma.

No full traffic detours will be required for this effort. Temporary road closures of up to an hour may be necessary at certain times at Long Island Avenue between 30th Street and 29th Street in Wyandanch, and at Carlls Straight Path. LIRR personnel will be on scene to ensure a safe and orderly operation.

Special weekend timetables will be available at stations and at

Service changes are as follows:


• Customers traveling to Bethpage through Ronkonkoma will board buses at Hicksville to their station.
• Eastbound customers can expect up to 44 minutes additional travel time.
• Customers at Ronkonkoma through Bethpage will board buses at their station up to 44 minutes earlier than normal train times, en route to Hicksville, where train service will resume.


• Customers traveling between Ronkonkoma and Greenport will have train service on adjusted schedules to connect to and from buses at Ronkonkoma.

Many Channels for Services Updates

Information about the service changes noted in this press release and all planned service changes is available through the LIRR’s real-time service information sources:

Email and text message service updates – Customers are urged to sign up to receive the alerts by visiting To avoid unwanted messages, a user can tailor the messages to the specific branch, and the specific times of day.

LIRR Train Time app – Customers who use the LIRR Train Time app will see up-to-the-minute status for each upcoming train at each station. As a caution, trains that start out their trips on time may experience delays en route. – The rail tab of the “Service Status” box at the left side of is always the definitive source for the latest status for each branch, updated every minute. In addition, customers can visit to see special service notices in the upper center of the page.

@LIRR on Twitter – Twitter users can follow @LIRR to receive updates of a similar nature to the email and text alerts, shortened to fit Twitter’s format.

The above communications channels can be accessed while at home or on the go. For customers who are located at stations, the LIRR will post the latest service updates on digital signs at station platforms and will make audio announcements over public address systems, and on-board announcements made by train crews.

For those who prefer the telephone, information is available from the LIRR’s Customer Service Center by calling 511, the New York State Travel Information Line, and saying: “Long Island Rail Road” Those who are deaf or hard of hearing can use their preferred service provider for the free 711 relay to reach the LIRR at 511.

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