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Amtrak releases service changes for Penn Station repairs

Amtrak releases service changes for Penn Station repairs

Long-Distance Service: The Crescent, operating between New York City and New Orleans, will originate and terminate in Washington, D.C. daily during work period.

While the plan is created to renew overused and aging infrastructure, overall improvement in reliability of Penn Station will require a commitment from all of the users of Penn Station, the Administration and Congress to provide investment in the Northeast Corridor and to fund the Gateway Program's Hudson Tunnel project and the expansion of Penn Station.

In what New York Governor Andrew Cuomo dubbed the "summer of agony", major disruptions are expected for riders as Amtrak replaces switches and rails in New York's Penn Station. More than 1,300 trains traverse the station's web of rails each day, Amtrak said. The two commuter lines carry hundreds of thousands people each weekday.

Among the changes are reductions to service between NY and Washington, D.C., and between NY and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The work was ordered after two recent derailments and numerous other delays.

NY is a major choke point on the railroad's Northeast Corridor, its most lucrative route, between Boston and Washington. One more round-trip train will start and end in Newark, New Jersey. The major work will require Amtrak and its partners to operate on a modified schedule from July 10 - September 1, 2017.

Amtrak owns and operates the station and surrounding tracks and equipment.

Empire Service: To be announced shortly. In addition to the derailments - one of which shut down eight tracks over a span of four days - disabled trains, electrical problems and other issues have seemingly become the norm. But the recent problems prompted Amtrak to condense the process to include weekdays.

Riders on NJ Transit's Morris & Essex Midtown Direct line are expected to be affected by the Penn Station summer work; they'll be diverted to Hoboken during the project, and from there, they'll be able to transfer for free to the PATH or the ferry, Gov. Christie said Tuesday.

As a result, trains headed into Penn Station are delayed about 30 minutes, while others are being canceled at Jamaica Station or diverted to Hunterspoint Avenue or Atlantic Terminal.

LIRR conductors handed out drinking water Tuesday morning.

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