One New York City publication is calling it a “summer of Hell” for train commuters as emergency track repairs get underway this week at Penn Station in Manhattan, one of the nation’s busiest rail hubs.
The repair work started this week and is due to continue until September 1, causing some major schedule disruptions, cancellations and detours for rail travelers.
But how will this affect frequent fliers? The most frequent use of Penn Station by air travelers is to take trains to and from Newark Airport – and it looks like those individuals dodged a bullet.
The vast majority of the trains used by Newark Airport travelers to and from Penn Station in Manhattan (don’t get confused – the trains also stop at Penn Station in Newark) are operated by New Jersey Transit. The trains don’t run to the airport itself, but to the Newark Airport Station, with transfers to the terminals via the AirTrain.
The Newark Airport Station is a stop on New Jersey Transit’s Northeast Corridor Line and North Jersey Coast Line. And the rail company said on its website that “all Northeast Corridor and North Jersey Coast Line trains to PSNY (Penn Station New York) will operate on regular weekday schedules with minor time changes.”
Amtrak reports that while a few northeast Corridor regional trains between Washington D.C.-New York and Philadelphia-New York will be canceled, there will be no changes to the schedules for its high-speed Acela trains in the Northeast Corridor – the trains most often used by business travelers.
Some travelers also use Long Island Rail Road commuter trains from Penn Station to travel to Jamaica Station in Queens for a transfer to the JFK Airport AirTrain, which takes travelers to the JFK terminals. There could be minor schedule changes for the LIRR, but there are so many trains running between Penn Station and Jamaica Station that any difference should be negligible.
The New York Times has published a handy guide with several links to help readers find their way around the transportation troubles resulting from the Penn Station repairs.