New LIRR Service Launched Today at Grand Central Madison in NYC

LIRR Grand Central Madison
Image source: MTA

New LIRR Service Launched at Grand Central Madison Today

The new LIRR stop at Grand Central Madison is finally open. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority started new Long Island Rail Road service to Grand Central Madison today, Wednesday, Jan. 25.

The first train left Jamaica at 10:45 a.m. and arrived at the terminal platform at 11:07 a.m.

For at least three weeks, LIRR will operate limited shuttle service between Jamaica and Grand Central Madison so customers can acquaint themselves with the new terminal as existing schedules continue. This will be followed by LIRR initiating full service from Long Island to Grand Central, per schedules that will be posted on new.mta.info/GrandCentralMadison and in the TrainTime app.

Image source: MTA

The train will be the first of regularly scheduled Grand Central Direct trains to operate between Jamaica and Grand Central Madison. Trains will operate between 6:15 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. on weekdays and from 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. on weekends. Trains will run every 30 minutes in both directions during weekday midday periods and on weekends and once per hour during peak periods (arriving in Grand Central between 6:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. and departing between 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.)

Grand Central Direct schedules will be available in the TrainTime app and at new.mta.info/GrandCentralMadison

During this initial period, the LIRR will have customer ambassadors on the Grand Central Madison concourse to greet customers and offer information about the new space. LIRR customers looking to travel to Grand Central Madison can use Penn Station tickets, as Penn Station and Grand Central Madison are in the same fare zone.

Image source: MTA

Easier Commute

Grand Central Madison doubles LIRR capacity into Manhattan. In conjunction with the completion of a third track on the LIRR Main Line, the new terminal enables reverse commuting options that were not previously possible. For LIRR customers who work on the east side of Manhattan, this new terminal is expected to save 40 minutes a day of commute time round trip.

The terminal also provides seamless connectivity through the MTA region, with both commuter railroads and the New York City Subway all in one building for the first time. The expansion of CityTicket will provide an additional travel option to Queens communities served by the LIRR, providing easier access to job opportunities. The impending introduction of the Combo Ticket will give New Yorkers, and those visiting New York, more travel options than ever to get to Long Island, the Hudson Valley, or Connecticut from the five boroughs. Customers in Metro-North Railroad territory for example will now have an one-ticket ride to JFK Airport.

$17.7 Billion Investment

Grand Central Madison and Main Line Third Track are part of an unprecedented $17.7 billion investment to transform and modernize the Long Island Rail Road with 100 projects throughout the system including construction of a more spacious LIRR Concourse at Penn Station with a new entrance at 33rd Street and Seventh Avenue, renewal and upgrading of 36 stations and 17 bridges, elimination of eight at-grade railroad crossings, activation of the Positive Train Control safety system, installation of 13 miles of second track between Farmingdale and Ronkonkoma, upgrades to 15 electrical substations, parking capacity increases, and yard expansions.

Additionally, following the opening of Moynihan Train Hall in 2021, the MTA, together with Empire State Development, NJ TRANSIT and Amtrak, is transforming Penn Station into a world-class, single-level terminal with abundant natural light, high ceilings, increased access to platforms, and enhanced wayfinding. 

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