Photo: MTA

MTA Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) announced the opening of the newly rebuilt east end overpass at Huntington Station. The new overpass is fully enclosed with glass panel walls welcoming in natural light and features brighter LED lighting and CCTV security cameras. The old overpass was completely demolished and removed to accommodate the construction of the new overpass including stairs, landings, and connecting bridges to the adjacent parking garages. 

The Huntington station, the LIRR’S fourth busiest station east of Jamaica, is part of the LIRR’s Port Jefferson Branch and serves as a key transfer point for many customers who travel east of Huntington. It has three overpasses and with the reconstruction of the east end overpass, Huntington customers will benefit from having all three overpasses enclosed, convenient on days with inclement weather. 

“The complete reconstruction of this pedestrian bridge visually enhances and modernizes Huntington Station,” said LIRR Interim President and Metro-North Railroad President Catherine Rinaldi. “This station enhancement not only gives riders a brand new overpass to use but also appropriately complements the increased service that will be coming to Huntington customers with the completion of the Third Track Expansion Project and the introduction of Grand Central Madison service later this year.” 

To accommodate the work, the east end overpass closed on Sept. 7, 2020 and eastbound customers boarded and exited trains through one of the last six or eight cars. With the majority of construction work complete by July, the full length of the platform, which can accommodate a 12-car train, was reopened last month. Customers are able to board and exit trains from any car. 

Despite the challenges the pandemic posed and scarcity of resources, the east end overpass replacement project was completed on time and on budget. The work was performed by Falcon Builder Inc., a Brooklyn-based contracting company that participates in the MTA’s Small Business Mentoring Program, which seeks to increase and facilitate the participation of small businesses, including Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises (MWBEs). 

The reconstruction is complete in time before the LIRR’s historical debut into Grand Central later this year, the first expansion of LIRR service in more than a century, as well as the expansion to a third track of the Main Line used by Huntington trains between Floral Park and Hicksville.