Thoughts On The Third Track


I read the editorial “Eminent Domain And A Happy Meal” by Christy Hinko in the Mineola American, March 30-April 5. She had quite a lot to say about the controversial third track.

I sat in front of my window reading my newspapers during a morning and evening rush hour observing the east-west trains going over the Roslyn Road overpass.

Beginning at 7 a.m. the times of westbound trains were 7:05, 7:07, 7:16, 7:28, 7:22, 7:24, 7:28, 7:30, 7:37, 7:41, 7:46, 7:51, 7:53, 8:01, 8:04, 8:11, 8:12, 8:17, 8:20, 8:28, 8:33, 8:49 and 9:21. Eastbound were 8:25, 8:37, 8:48, 8:52, 9:09, 9:13 and 9:16. The morning rush hour was over.

For the evening rush hour eastbound: 4:48, 4:59, 5:01, 5:06, 5:15, 5:21, 5:23, 5:26, 5:37, 5:43, 5:46, 5:50, 5:53, 5:55, 5:58, 6:00, 6:04, 6:11, 6:14, 6:16, 6:21, 6:24, 6:29, 6:33, 6:36, 6:41, 6:51, 7:00, 7:09, 7:16, 7:37, 7:39, 7:57, 8:00, 8:06, 8:21, 8:35 and 8:53.

Westbound: 4:35, 4:40, 4:44, 4:59, 5:04, 5:27, 5:31, 5:43, 5:54, 6:43, 6:48, 7:00, 7:11, 7:15, 7:23, 7:26, 7:35, 7:40, 7:51, 7:59, 8:09, 8:35 and 8:53.

During the morning rush, many more trains went west (24) and seven went east.
It seems that many trains were stored overnight at the east end of the lines.

During the evening rush, 38 went east and 23 went west. During the day trains must have been stored at or near Penn Station. Obviously there are cleaning and maintenance yards somewhere.

For the morning rush I watched about two and a half and four hours for the evening.
One excuse for a third track is to commute more passengers. The Oyster Bay line uses double decker cars.

Of all those I saw mentioned above, only about 10 percent were double deckers. A double decker train would carry twice as many passengers. Having all the trains double decker would solve the supposed problem.

Not to go into it in detail now, but the tracks should tunnel under the roadway of School Street in Westbury. I am not sure where the other crossing is. The two in Mineola should be closed. There is no room for another solution.

It is only one block from Willis Avenue to Roslyn Road with the underpass. One block from Main Street to Mineola Blvd. with the overpass.

I have looked at all three in New Hyde Park. The streets are wide enough that the two center lanes can go under the tracks.

The outer two are still local and end at the tracks and there are still sidewalks.
The foregoing provides an actual description of the situation. I have also thought out the details for Mineola and New Hyde Park.

—Charles Samek

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