Guest Speaker: Hector Garcia, LIRR Senior Director of External Affairs

Mr. Garcia mentioned the history of the LIRR going back to 1834 1st train to Greenport. 1990s planning and surveys to bring RR up to date.

Ronkonkoma new train yard, more cars. Jamaica connections, more tracks to go to Penn and Brooklyn directly including a tunnel for Amtrak trains so they do not have to crossover LIRR tracks.

LIRR is busy sprucing up and updating GC Stations from Country Life Press to Stewart Manor. Stewart Manor will have new platforms, new paved parking lot and sidewalks.

The Third Track is funded and start to finish about four year starting in 2019. 2018 will be design process time with the last quarter or 2019 1st quarter building the Covert avenue underpass. New Hyde Park follows and will take nine months. The third track will award contracts based on delivery of service along with cost. Preconstruction surveys and project hotline will be established to keep residents informed. Penalties on contractors for not fulfilling dates on time.

The New Hyde Park Avenue crossing will be raised 5 feet along the line and behind Greenridge Avenue. The sound walls will be at least 8 feet tall but neighbors are asking for more. (20 feet).   The sound walls will be at least four feet above tracks. The tallest train is 15 feet.

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The Village’s MOU is still in process and not final details not available at this time.


Questions for the LIRR came from a number of members in the audience.

The height of the sound wall along the tracks behind Greenridge Avenue, Nassau Haven Park and behind Bird Sanctuary. Residents asked for a wall of 20 plus feet while the LIRR representative stated, as of now, it would be 4 feet above the tracks. (With the tracks rising 5 feet along New Hyde Park Road, this would put the wall at 9- 10 feet at this time.) Harry Choban, resident of Greenridge Avenue disagreed with LIRR representative about the foundation requirements of higher retaining wall pointing to sound walls along highways and other travel routes that are well above 20 feet. Mr. Choban concerns included the open garbage containers traveling along his backyard and the tall railroad cars of up to 15 feet.

The start of project.? No sooner than 2019. With Covert Avenue going first, New Hyde Park would initiate sometime in 2019.

Other questions focused on the history of delays on other projects, location of staging areas and traffic flow. The LIRR has purchased a parcel on the New Hyde Park Road train station, which would be primary area for staging construction, and recent projects have been on time or ahead of schedule.