The Connecticut Department of Transportation has announced that the agency expects track improvements to be completed on the New Canaan Branch Line this summer, informing passengers that all train service will be replaced by substitute bus service.
The planned work is part of a program for tie replacement and track enhancements, a release said. When finished, an existing speed limit in the Stamford region will be lifted. Train speeds will climb from 30 to 50 miles per hour across this stretch.
The rail upgrades and bus substitution are scheduled to begin on May 30, 2023, and will last through August, according to CTDOT.
“CTDOT has continued to move forward with projects that modernize and improve our state rail systems to bolster efficiency, safety, and overall customer experience,” said Connecticut Department of Transportation Commissioner Garrett Eucalitto.
Eucalitto said CTDOT worked with Metro-North to ensure the service outage begins after Memorial Day and concludes prior to Labor Day, coinciding with the time commuters are likely to have summer vacations planned.
“We appreciate the patience and understanding of our customers as we enter the final phases of work activity,” Eucalitto said.
This year’s construction program includes replacing approximately 8,000 ties with a Pandrol fastening system, 1,600 feet of rail, insulated rail joints, and bridge timbers over the Noroton River Bridge. Remediation of mud spots is also planned at several locations, as well as reinstatement of drainage along portions of the branch where necessary, reinstallation of new rail anchors as needed, and surfacing the entire branch line.
The work to lift the speed restriction on the New Haven Line Track 5 includes the replacement of 830 ties, 1,200 feet of rail and bridge timbers over the Canal Street Bridge, Elm Street Bridge, and East Main Street Bridge; surfacing the entire stretch; and maintaining the railway turnout by Elm Street.