Amtrak & NY Penn; can't win for losing

Amtrak CEO Wick Moorman (the only real railroad man at the helm in many years), announced last week they were accelerating the schedule for repair or replacement of critical turnouts in the interlocking leading from the North River tunnels into NY Penn's platform tracks. Due to several recent incidents of trackwork failures and admitted deferred maintenance.

A result of this work program will be an extended period of daily delays over the summer, which I imagine as unavoidable due to the high volume of traffic in & out of NY Penn.

Now, the local politicians scream bloody murder about the proposed delays, after they screamed bloody murder over the recent derailments and delays. In obvious moves to appear sympathetic to the commuters (read voters).

NY Penn is the busiest terminal in the country, with an very complex interlocking plant. Now that Moorman has pledged to fix the problem, one would think a tempered wait-and-see attitude would prevail. Not so.

I do not envy the task these railroad men face.

I am John Galt !


Original Post

The split ownership situation, where Amtrak, NJ Transit and the MTA/LIRR, all responding to different political masters, attempt to position themselves as 'not my fault'. It's not like the old days where the PRR had central decision making. Worrying is the talk about adding more private contractors to the mix to coordinate among the RRs. My experience is adding another decision making point just doubles the amount of time anything takes to get done.


Put a bunch of politicians and several agencies in a room together and see how much gets accomplished - NOTHING! Those of us who live in the area know this all to well. I will say that Amtrak should not be in charge of a station that they use the least out of the other 3 RR's.

Three Rails Are Better Than None 

Joe Hohmann posted:

We are going from Phila to Boston on Thursday. We were notified that 9 minutes were added to the trip time, coming and going. I hope it's only 9 minutes.

Actually, the fact we arrived 30 minutes late was due to on and off track work in CT. Very frustrating going 15 mph on about 6 occasions. No delay in NY Penn station.

I just returned from a 2,500 mile auto trip across several states.  There were several traffic slowdowns in each state for highway work.  There is no getting around that repairs to busy rail lines and roads are going to require slowdowns.  The alternate is to completely close the road or rail line for a short period and go all out.  However, that isn't usually an option for busy congested sections that do not have alternate routes.

NH Joe

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