After many delays, Grand Central Madison finally opened last month, offering limited LIRR service. And finally, as of Monday, February 27, the new 700K-square-foot LIRR terminal will officially be fully open.
New Yorkers expected the new LIRR terminal to open back in December, but the opening date was pushed back due to airflow and fire safety testing that was still being done.
Instead, the first Grand Central Madison-bound train departed Jamaica last month, on Wednesday January 25, and the terminal will officially roll out full service on Monday, February 27th.
Since its opening, the terminal has been running part time along with offering LIRR shuttle services, named Grand Central Direct, while awaiting the terminal’s full opening.
Beginning Monday, February 27, 296 trains will be added to timetables, offering riders 41% increased service.
The new train schedules can be found on the TrainTime app as well as online, so those planning to commute through the new hub can have an idea of what timetables they can expect.
Service to Grand Central Madison will be offered on all 11 branches of the LIRR.
Back in May of last year, Governor Kathy Hochul announced in a press release that the new Long Island Rail Road terminal coming to Midtown would be named Grand Central Madison.
Getting its name from the fact that it’s located below Grand Central Terminal and Madison Avenue from 43rd Street to 48th Street, the 700,000-square-foot terminal was expected to finish by the end of 2022, but the opening was delayed.
The new terminal is the largest passenger rail terminal to be built in the U.S. since the 1950s. Officials stated that the $11.1 billion infrastructure project would provide benefits for the entire downstate region including allowing the LIRR to increase morning peak service systemwide by 40% and reducing passenger congestion at Penn Station.
Riders can look forward to eight new tracks and four platforms on two new levels below the existing lower level of Grand Central Terminal. These new levels will include 25 retail storefronts, four new entrances to the street level, and two new entrances into the existing spaces of Grand Central.
The terminal will also feature real-time digital signage, cell service, and Wi-Fi.
Some additional benefits of Grand Central Madison will include as stated by the MTA:
- More evenly spaced trains and fewer large gaps in service
- More frequent service to Queens
- More frequent service on the Ronkonkoma and West Hempstead branches
- 28% increase in Brooklyn service
- Decreased travel times from Long Island to Manhattan
Stay updated on on the new terminal on the MTA website.