SIX MONTHS AHEAD OF SCHEDULE, PATH WTC STATION REOPENS ON WEEKENDS FOLLOWING EXTENSIVE TUNNEL REPAIRS NECESSITATED BY SUPERSTORM SANDY
Streamlined construction schedule, maximizing workforce, and conducting weekly work assessments were keys to an early reopening
PATH’s World Trade Center (WTC) station has reopened for weekend service – six months ahead of schedule — following extensive Superstorm Sandy-related repairs. The station’s early reopening is part of PATH’s effort to deliver safer, more reliable service for riders, especially essential frontline workers.
Beginning in January 2019, the WTC station was closed on weekends to facilitate work on the tunnels connecting the WTC and Exchange Place stations. These closures during traditionally lower volume days allowed crews to undertake extensive repair and rehabilitation work necessitated by saltwater damage from Superstorm Sandy flooding. The project includes the replacement of PATH’s tracks, third rail, electrical, signal and communications infrastructure in the tunnels below the Hudson River.
PATH was able to reopen ahead of the original December 2020 completion date by modifying its construction schedule. PATH engineers and contractors monitored work closely and held rigorous weekly project reviews, continually reassessing work done after each weekend closure and expediting changes to redirect workflow.
Through work resequencing and maximizing the workforce, PATH was able to realize efficiencies and reduce the repair process in conjunction with its contractor. PATH has reopened one side of the tunnel, allowing repairs to continue while minimizing the service impact on weekend WTC-Exchange Place riders.
“In this time of COVID-19, too much is uncertain,” said Port Authority Chairman Kevin O’Toole. “What is certain is that PATH is committed to improving its legacy infrastructure, bringing its passengers more reliable service, and undoing the severe damage inflicted by Superstorm Sandy as quickly and efficiently as possible.”
“We are pleased we could shorten the period of time that weekend closures were in effect,” said Port Authority Executive Director Rick Cotton. “We ask PATH riders for their patience too often. Now for those trying to use the World Trade Center station on weekends, the wait is over.”
“We know that the past 18 months have not been easy for weekend PATH riders using the Newark-World Trade Center line,” said PATH General Manager Clarelle DeGraffe. “We’ve been working hard to complete this project as quickly and with as little disruption as possible, and we thank our customers for their patience and understanding.”
Reopening the WTC station on weekends is part of PATH’s commitment to get essential workers and other customers safely to their destinations during the pandemic and help them adhere to travel restrictions outlined in the emergency orders of New York and New Jersey.
Among other operational changes and enhancements designed to protect the traveling public, PATH is urging riders to wear masks or other coverings on cars, platforms and elsewhere in stations. PATH also is disinfecting high-touch areas of its stations and platforms three times a day – once per each 8-hour shift. PATH trains are being disinfected every 24 hours and cleaned every 72 hours or less.
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