Buses to Substitute for All Waterbury Branch Trains From June 1 Through Aug. 29
Work Part of Capital Improvement Project Which Includes Signalization, Grade Crossing Improvements, Track Resurfacing
MTA Metro-North Railroad is reminding Waterbury Branch customers that starting on June 1 Waterbury train service will be replaced by bus service to accommodate infrastructure improvements on the branch. Train service is expected to be restored by Sunday, Aug. 29. With ridership still reduced due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this work can be accomplished while minimizing inconveniences to customers in the future.
The improvement work taking place includes railroad crossing improvements, the replacement of track ties and track curves, completion of passing sidings and track resurfacing along the branch to ensure smoother rides. The work, a priority of the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT), is part of the $116 million capital improvement project which, when completed, will enable more reliable Waterbury Branch service. In order to accommodate this work bus service will be provided as an additional travel option for customers affected.
This work builds on the successful 2020 program that accelerated construction of the new Waterbury Branch signal system and passing sidings. This year the construction program includes completion of the new passing sidings, at-grade crossing improvements, continuation of tie replacement and track upgrades, and completion of the signal system.
“By getting this work done now we will be ready for the post-Labor Day return of riders,” said Catherine Rinaldi, President of Metro-North Railroad. “CTDOT is a great partner and I know that once they complete this project our Waterbury customers will appreciate the smoother ride and reliable service.”
“The Connecticut Department of Transportation has continued to move forward, step by step, to modernize and improve the Waterbury Branch to bolster efficiency, safety, and the overall customer experience,” said Connecticut Transportation Commissioner Joe Giulietti. “These upgrades will help support additional rail service on the line in the future, and we appreciate the patience and understanding of our fantastic customers as we enter the final phases of work activity.”
The initial phase of the work is taking place overnights between May 10-28. During that time, buses are replacing the last train from Waterbury and last two Waterbury-bound trains departing from Grand Central Terminal (GCT) and Bridgeport on weeknights.
Customers can access full bus schedule here.
Channels for Service Updates
Information about the planned schedule change noted in this press release, and all planned service changes, is available through the MTA and Metro-North’s many real-time service information sources.
new.MTA.info–The “Service Status” box at new.MTA.infois always the definitive source for the latest status for each line.
Email and text message service updates – Customers are urged to sign up to receive alerts, tailored by specific branch and time of day, by visiting www.MyMTAAlerts.com.
Twitter – Twitter users can follow @MetroNorth to receive dynamic service updates and customer service support.
TrainTime app – Metro-North unveiled major upgrades to its TrainTime app late last year to keep customers updated by the second. The upgraded app includes real-time capacity tracking to enhance social distancing, real-time train location updated every three seconds and is available in six language.
WhatsApp - Metro-North recently started using WhatsApp to expand the number of customer service channels available to riders and is especially helpful for non-native English speakers. Customers can receive customer service support in their native language through the help of Google Translate.
Facebook – Facebook users can message Metro-North on its Facebook page to speak with a customer service representative.
These communication channels can be accessed while at home or on the go. For customers who are located at stations, the MTA will post the latest service updates on digital signs at station platforms and will make audio announcements over public address systems, and on-board announcements made by train crews.
For those who prefer to contact the MTA by telephone, information is available by dialing 511, the New York State Travel Information Line. Connecticut customers should call 877-690-5114. Those who are deaf or hard of hearing can use their preferred service provider for the free 711 relay to reach the MTA at 511.