Award–winning journalist Andrea Bernstein is the Metro Editor for WNYC News. She has previously served as Political Director, Director of Transportation Nation, and Senior Reporter.
The train tracks under the East River that support hundreds of Long Island Railroad cars daily will be replaced during a $48 million job that begins next month as the result of what officials said were "significant water drainage issues."
The East River tunnels connect Penn Station to Long Island and to Amtrak's Sunnyside yards. Amtrak, which owns the tracks, also uses the tunnels to shuttles trains from Penn Station to its Queens rail yards.
Last spring, a broken rail in the yards led to a week's worth of delays.
Officials said that after the rail was repaired, inspections found more serious problems will replace all four sets of tracks under the East River as a result.
The work will begin next month and take place on weekends. The MTA is vowing service won't be interrupted, but the authority said the "critical" tunnel work will cause delays on the East Side Access project, a major new project that will connect LIRR trains to Grand Central station.
The cost of the project is being shared by Amtrak and the MTA.
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