CONNECTICUT DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
2800 BERLIN TURNPIKE P.O. BOX 317546
NEWINGTON CONNECTICUT, 06131-7546
|FOR RELEASE: October 3, 2008
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION: OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS
TELEPHONE: (860) 594-3062
Fax: (860) 594-3066
The Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) today reminded rail customers that beginning Sunday, October 5th, a new fall schedule will go in to affect for New Haven Line (NHL) and Shore Line East (SLE). The fall schedule will provide new rail service on the Danbury and Waterbury Branch Lines, and new eastbound evening service from Stamford to New Haven to reduce a 47 minute service gap in this critical commuter time period.
The Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) and Metro-North Railroad (MNR) have scheduled additional trains as part of a continuing program to expand rail service and the meet growing regional ridership needs. Already through August 31, 2008, the New Haven Line (NHL) ridership increased over 5 percent, adding over 1.2 million more rail customers. Connecticut’s Intrastate ridership on the NHL increased over 16 percent compared to August 2007.
“Each month as fuel prices continue to rise, Connecticut residents are looking for convenient and cost-effective means to travel in the state and region. The state rail system can meet that need for many residents.” said Transportation Commissioner Joseph F. Marie. “Connecticut’s public transportation system is an excellent, convenient service and we are happy to see more customers utilizing the service within Connecticut and throughout the region.”
The increase train service will include one new weekday off-peak train added to the Danbury Line and one new weekend midday round trip train to the Waterbury Line. The new trains will allow customers flexibility and more frequency to travel to New York City and around the state. The entire train schedule for the Danbury and Waterbury branch lines will have time change adjustments between 43 minutes earlier to 60 minutes later to accommodate the new trains. Customers should consult the new time schedule, via the website at www.mta.info or call 800 METRO-INFO.
The additional weekday midday service on the Danbury Branch will depart Danbury at 12:42 p.m. and arrive in South Norwalk at 1:29 p.m., letting customers connect with a 1:38 p.m. train to Grand Central. There will also be a train departing South Norwalk at 11:11 a.m. and arrive in Danbury at 11:58 a.m. Adding this new service requires adjusting other midday train times by up to 60 minutes. Check the new timetables for further changes to Danbury Branch train times.
Weekend schedules on the Waterbury Branch have been reconfigured allowing increased service from four round trips a day to five. With this additional round trip in the midday, trains can now run up to an hour earlier in the morning, and an hour later in the evening. Customers should consult the new time schedule, via the website at www.mta.info or call 800 METRO-INFO.
In addition to the time changes on the branch lines, MNR will add additional stops during the evening rush hour to improve frequency of service between Stamford and New Haven on the New Haven Line (NHL). The changes will close a 47-minute gap in service from Stamford to stations east of Bridgeport as well as improve connections from between New York, Greenwich and Stamford for travel east on the NHL.
Weekdays on the NHL, the 5:48 p.m. train departing from Grand Central Terminal (GCT), which currently terminated in Bridgeport, will travel beyond to Stratford and Milford, arriving in New Haven at 7:36 p.m. The 5:30 p.m. train departing GCT, which currently terminates in Old Greenwich, will continue to Stamford arriving at 6:29 p.m. The 6:29 p.m. train will allow for customers to travel further along the New Haven Line from Stamford by connecting with the 6:32 p.m. train at Stamford (which is the extended 5:48 p.m. train stated earlier.)
“The Department is committed to pursing and providing enhanced rail service on all levels, and will work with our operator, Metro-North Railroad, to provide for flexible, expanded schedules and additional rail service in a cost-effective manner to meet our growing ridership,” said Commissioner Marie.
MNR will also adjust late evening train service to accommodate capital improvement projects in New York and Connecticut. The time changes will create an additional late evening westbound train to GCT service as well as provide for later departure for the last train from New Haven to GCT, which had been a subject of customer requests. Additional minor adjustments to several p.m. peak express service trains have occurred to accommodate track and bridge work between South Norwalk and Bridgeport.
Shore Line East rail schedule will have minor time change on both weekday and weekend service effective Sunday, October 5, 2008, at various stations to allow for efficient connecting service with the NHL. Customer should consult the new timetable via www.shorelineeast.com or call 800 ALL-RIDE.