By Tom McCarthy
Work expected to start for the New Hyde Park Road grade crossing elimination for the LIRR’s third track project has been delayed with no set date, Trustee Rainer Berger said at a board of trustees meeting Thursday.
“Last board meeting, I briefed that the New Hyde Park Road construction would start Nov. 18. That, however, has been delayed. We don’t have a date,” Berger said.
Berger said he and New Hyde Park Mayor Lawrence Montreuil are set to meet with the developers hired for the project 3rd Track Constructors (3TC) Oct. 23 to discuss the project. Berger said that the project could be delayed until the new year.
3TC has completed a traffic detour plan for New Hyde Park Road in Feb. 2019 and the village board plans on reviewing it, Berger said.
Berger said that a major spot to watch out for in the village is the village’s 12th Street, which Berger said suffered from major traffic congestion when a portion of Covert Avenue was closed for six months for a grade crossing elimination project.
Berger said that it will “get congested again” once work starts up at New Hyde Park Road. The village is still waiting on speed bump plans for 12th Street from 3TC, Berger said.
“There are a lot of lessons learned at Covert,” Berger said.
Representatives from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority(MTA) were not immediately available for comment.
The New Hyde Park Road grade crossing in the Village of New Hyde Park is one of eight street-level crossings along the LIRR Main Line corridor being eliminated as part of the LIRR Expansion Project from Floral Park to Hicksville, the MTA said.
According to the MTA, The New Hyde Park Road grade crossing poses a safety risk to drivers, pedestrians, and LIRR customers, contributes to noise and air pollution and causes longer commutes for drivers and LIRR customers. The MTA said there were six fatal crashes at grade crossing locations in the LIRR Main Line corridor between 2007 to 2017.
The New Hyde Park grade crossing is being reconstructed to feature a new five-lane underpass with pedestrian sidewalks on the east and west sides of the underpass, the MTA said. There will also be a left-turn lane from southbound New Hyde Park Road to Clinch Avenue.
According to the LIRR’s “A Modern LI” website, construction on the project is expected to begin in Winter 2019 with it its completion set for Summer 2020.