Ah, our crumbling transportation infrastructure. Every day we live with it is another opportunity to experience a specific kind of hell. And just in case you were wondering, no, that hell will not be going away at Penn Station anytime soon, at least if the CEO of Amtrak is to be believed.
While testifying in front of the New York State Assembly on the matter of why Penn Station is all f*cked up and b*llshit and how anyone is going to fix it, Amtrak CEO Charles Moorman told lawmakers that Penn Station might have to suffer through another repair-related track shutdown next year, according to the Post. That's in addition to the planned six weeks of work that will shut down a good chunk of tracks under Penn this summer while Amtrak, which owns and maintains the station, tries to fix their tracks in order to avoid more derailments and chaos. Approximately 75 percent of trains are expected to continue to operate through Penn Station during the summertime work.
"We might have another outage next year. We just don't know yet. Our plan is to get as much work as we can get done this year," Moorman told lawmakers, while also telling them he's still not sure what kind of disruptions are in commuters' futures this summer. Full details of this summer's track shutdown are expected to be released next week.
One thing you can probably count on, or at least should keep in mind while making travel plans though, is that you should bank an extra 90 minutes or four hours to make time for derailments, flooding and other acts of infrastructure problems.
After the hearing, state Sen. Todd Kaminsky blasted Amtrak's management of Penn Station, Newsday reports: "Amtrak has let Penn Station fall apart under its watch—and the testimony from Amtrak executives today gave New Yorkers no reason to believe that the unacceptable state of the station will improve. Today, Amtrak essentially admitted that there is a safety and infrastructure debacle at Penn Station and that it could not effectively deal with the crisis."