NYCT wraps up M Line reconstruction

Written by Kyra Senese, Managing Editor, Railway Track & Structures
New York City Transit subway

Photo: Marc A. Hermann / MTA New York City Transit

Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City Transit finished work on its Myrtle Viaduct on the M Line, rebuilding the structure that has been in place for more than a century.

The viaduct had been deteriorating after more than 100 years of constant operations and exposure to the elements, officials said.

“Completing this project on time and on budget was critical to show how serious we are about minimizing impacts on our customers as we perform this important work,” said MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota. “This is a major win for our customers and the surrounding community. We promised to modernize and stabilize the subway system, and we thank our customers for their continued patience as we take the necessary steps to do so.”

The viaduct needed to be demolished and completely rebuilt to ensure the M Line’s long-term success, MTA said. The 310-foot viaduct carries trains between Myrtle Avenue and Central Avenue and transports about 50,000 passengers each weekday.

Ridership at the seven stations along the Myrtle Avenue line has grown 53% since 2000, MTA said.

“It is imperative that M train service operates as efficiently as possible for all our customers who rely on it,” said NYCT President Andy Byford. “When we couple the long-term fortification work on this line with the smoother ride and quieter tracks, we can be sure we’re on our way to building the world-class transit system we’ve pledged to deliver. I’m very proud of my team for completing this job safely, on time and on budget.”

The $163-million project on the M Line overpass was conducted in two phases starting in July 2017. In Phase 1, work was performed on the Fresh Pond Bridge over two months in the summer during school vacation to minimize disruption caused by the service changes.

Crews demolished the bridge and installed 65 feet of new structure and 600 feet of new track, as well as a new third rail.

Additional work included the following:

Installation of 310 feet of newly-built low vibration tracks to reduce noise

Installation of 700 feet of new third rail for reliable power delivery

Installation of newly-engineered crossties over 400 feet of track

Replacement of all local signal equipment and cables

Regular service resumed following the work on the morning of April 30, MTA said.

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