A local group in New York City—ReThinkNYC—wants to remake the face of the urban rail network in the region. ReThinkNYC’s premise comes down to through-routing the region’s three commuter rail companies (Long Island Railroad, Metro-North Railroad, and NJTransit) via Penn Station in Midtown Manhattan. Metro-North trains currently terminate at Grand Central—north of Penn Station—while LIRR and NJTransit trains terminate at Penn Station itself. ReThinkNYC says that this service pattern results in bottlenecks and reduced capacity—problems that could be alleviated by through-routing trains further out to New Jersey and Brooklyn/Queens.

In a short three-part series, ReThinkNYC shows how through-routing might work and where new investments should be made in commuter railway corridors to help realize the plan.

Also, see Part 2 and Part 3.

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Stephen is an urban planner with a passion for promoting sustainable, livable, and diverse cities. He advocates for smart policies, regulations, and implementation programs that enhance urban environments by committing to quality design, accommodating growth, providing a diversity of housing choices, and adequately providing public services. Stephen primarily writes about land use and transportation issues.