- Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) Third Track Expansion Project
- 2017 Information
- MTA Responds to Garden City’s Concerns, Commits In Writing To Village Wants
MTA Responds to Garden City’s Concerns, Commits In Writing To Village Wants
Last year, to ensure that the Village and its residents were kept fully informed regarding the MTA/LIRR Third Track project, and to also ensure that the Village's interests were properly articulated to the MTA/LIRR, the Board of Trustees established a Third Track Committee comprised of three trustees. The Committee was charged with interacting with the various agencies involved with the Third Track project and is comprised of Mayor Brian C. Daughney and Trustees John A. DeMaro and Stephen S Makrinos.
The Committee has had several in-person meetings and numerous conversations with the MTA/LIRR as the Third Track Project has progressed. The Committee, as reported to the full Board of Trustees, and to the public, communicated to the MTA/LIRR its concerns regarding facets of the project that could impact our Village.
Throughout the process, the Committee has communicated to the MTA/LIRR the concerns it has heard from residents, as well as concerns that the Board and Committee members have raised on their own. These concerns include dust and chemical contamination issues, noise issues, the potential for traffic changes to Nassau Boulevard, the need for proper sound barriers, the potential for increased freight along the Main Line and the replanting of vegetation along Main Avenue, and the visual impact of the new station at Merillon Avenue. Throughout the process, in the opinion of the Committee and the Board, the MTA/LIRR has been open to ideas regarding steps it might take which could lessen the impact of the project on Village residents, both short and long-term. Further, the Committee has found that the MTA/LIRR has been open to suggestions for other improvements to the Merillon Avenue, New Hyde Park, and Stewart Manor stations which could improve the commuting experience for our residents.
In addition, we again retained our consultant, Vertex to review the Final Environmental Impact Study and to advise us whether the MTA/LIRR had rationally and reasonably responded to our original comments on the Draft Environmental Impact Study.
Another issue of concern that members of the Board of Trustees had heard from residents was our ability to rely upon the MTA/LIRR for promises being made and we have insisted that the MTA/LIRR respond to these concerns.
Last week, the MTA/LIRR issued a letter to our State Senate representative, Kemp Hannon, and also to State Senate representative Elaine Phillips, who represents New Hyde Park and Floral Park, in which it committed - in writing - to the promises that had been previously communicated to us.
The Committee and the Board continue to have discussions with the MTA/LIRR and will of course closely monitor the progress of the project should it occur. The Board fully understands that during the construction phase, if the project is actually undertaken, the project will result in traffic and noise and other inconveniences to residents. We do not underestimate the potential for this project to be disruptive. We have insisted that we have continued access throughout the process and the MTA/LIRR has positively responded that we will enjoy such access. As with our other concerns, we believe that the MTA/LIRR has heard our request, and in this regard has further agreed to set up a dedicated team that will be tasked with promptly responding to issues that arise during construction.
The Board believes that because it chose to talk to the MTA/LIRR instead of merely complaining about the proposal, the Village's concerns are being more fully acknowledged and addressed. We are committed to lessening the impact of, or removing, as many problems as we can.