Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that enhanced service on Long Island Rail Road, Metro-North Railroad and the NYC Subway is now operating in time for the evening rush hour. Additional subway service will be added to the schedule for in time for Friday’s rush hour. All commuter rail, bus and subway service is fare free until tomorrow evening. Access-A-Ride service is operating normally, accepting next day reservations, and is also fare free, as are city buses. Metro-North has extended Harlem Line service to Southeast, and full service between Southeast and Grand Central Terminal will be restored tomorrow morning. Currently, close to regularly scheduled service is being provided on the Harlem Line between Mount Kisco and Grand Central Terminal, and on the New Haven Line between Stamford and Grand Central Terminal. MTA Long Island Rail Road is restoring limited hourly service for tomorrow morning’s rush on the Port Jefferson Branch from Huntington to Penn Station and on the Babylon Branch to Penn Station as work continues around the clock in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. The recovery work, while taking place throughout the LIRR system, focused on returning service to the LIRR’s four largest branches – Port Washington, Ronkonkoma, Babylon and Huntington. The newly restored service for tomorrow morning’s rush, supplements the hourly service LIRR restored between Jamaica and both Atlantic Terminal and Penn Station; as well as the hourly service restored for this morning’s AM rush on the Ronkonkoma Branch to Penn Station and on the Port Washington branch between Penn Station and Great Neck. There continues to be no stops during peak periods at Kew Gardens and Forest Hills – these stops will only be made during the off-peak. The M train joined the list of restored subway services earlier this afternoon, in time for the Thursday evening rush period. This marks yet another step on the road to recovery in the wake of “Superstorm” Sandy. “As we have said from the beginning, we will bring service back on a gradual basis as we are able to do so. The subway system will be a shifting landscape for some time to come,” said MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota. “But we are making steady progress toward some level of normalcy.” Additionally, 7 trains are set to resume partial service at about 9 p.m., tonight, running between Main Street and 74th-Broadway, where customers can transfer to Queens Boulevard F and M trains for the trip into Manhattan. The additional subway service will take some of the stain off the bus network, which was the first service to be restored on Tuesday, but has been slowed by street conditions and heavy use. Until full service is restored to all lines, customers should expect some delays and crowding on trains and should stagger their travel times. More work needs to be done to restore normal rail and subway service. Downed trees are still being removed from tracks of both the Long Island and Metro-North Railroad. Work continues to pump water out of several under river subway tunnels and at both the Hugh L. Carey and Queens-Midtown tunnels.
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