Mark Groce: I’m Mark Groce and you're listening to an "In the News" podcast on Transit Trax, New York City Transit's podcast service.
Hurricane Sandy devastated much of New York City and the New York City Transit infrastructure was especially hard hit. From Far Rockaway to Washington Heights the water took a toll on everything in its path, including the Greenpoint Tube.
Terri Rumph is the General Superintendent for the Department of Subways Recovery and Resiliency team.
Terri Rumph: The Greenpoint Tube was flooded with water to the ceiling in parts of it. We ended up having to pump out approximately a million gallons of water to clear it.
Mark Groce: The Greenpoint Tube is a 4,000 foot tunnel that runs under the East River and carries the G train from north of Greenpoint in Brooklyn to south of 21 Street in Queens. And although precautions were taken to prevent flooding, Superstorm Sandy was unlike anything New York City Transit has ever encountered before.
Terri Rumph: Water infiltrated our system through various street side access points, such as the emergency exits, the Con Edison vaults and manholes, equipment access hatches, and various conduits.
Mark Groce: As you can imagine, the damage was extensive.
Terri Rumph: We had damage to almost all of our different systems: our signaling systems, our track system, our communication and power systems, our fan plants, our pumping systems. We were compromised across the board.
Mark Groce: To repair that kind of damage New York City Transit must perform a significant amount of repair.
Terri Rumph: Well, we have to go in and replace everything that was damaged. We have to replace rails and plates. We need to put in new tunnel lighting wiring in fixtures. The emergency alarms and telephones have to be replaced, the fire emergency communication system, duct banks that were cracked, we need new communication and control, fiber cables, the fan needs new controls, power feeds, control cables, and we need to replace the pumps that were damaged.
Mark Groce: While trying to minimize the impact to the tens of thousands of daily commuters who rely on the G train.
Terri Rumph: It's scheduled to start July 6, 2013 and will continue for 12 weekends ending in December. In 2014 we also plan to have five weeks of continuous shutdown.
Mark Groce: If you're wondering how to get around while the work is going on, rest assured that New York City Transit is doing everything it can to make your trip easier.
Tina Owens from Operations Planning tells you what your alternatives are.
Tina Owens: G trains operate between Church Av and Nassau Av.
As travel alternatives, free shuttle buses provide alternate service on two routes.
The first is via Manhattan Av between the Nassau Av G station and Court Sq.
The second is via McGuinness Blvd between the Lorimer St L station and Court Sq.
When making your connections, keep these transfer points in mind while traveling.
At Nassau Av, you have G trains and free shuttle buses.
At Lorimer St, you have L trains and free shuttle buses.
At Court Sq, you have the E and 7 trains, and free shuttle buses.
Mark Groce: Because construction projects can be canceled, be sure to consult our website, www.mta.info, for “Service Status” and “Planned Service Changes.” While there, you may also opt to use Trip Planner+ which provides you with customized travel directions that take service changes into account, while giving you up to three alternate route options.
Also available is our free Email Notification Program; you can sign up for weekday or weekend notifications about both planned reroutes and real time changes in service.
Finally, you may also dial 511 for travel information for all MTA services.
It’s good information so you’ll “Know Before You Go!”
For TransitTrax, I'm Mark Groce. Thanks for listening and thanks for riding with New York City Transit.