MTA (the Metropolitan Transportation Authority) revealed that Long Island Rail Road service to Grand Central Madison started on January 25. The first train was prepared to initiate at Jamaica at 10:45 a.m. and operate express to Grand Central Madison, where it is planned to arrive at 11:07 a.m.
As stated, LIRR will operate in limited shuttle service between Jamaica and Grand Central Madison for at least three weeks, so customers can familiarize themselves with the new terminal as current programs continue. This is said to be followed by LIRR initiating full service from Long Island to Grand Central, per timetables that will be published on here and in the TrainTime app.
The train is claimed to be the first of regularly prepared Grand Central Direct trains to run between Jamaica and Grand Central Madison. Trains will operate every 30 minutes in both directions during weekday midday periods, weekends and once per hour during peak periods.
During this starting period, the LIRR will have customer ambassadors on the Grand Central Madison concourse to welcome customers and deliver information regarding the new space.
This impressive Grand Central Direct service will end with the start of full train service mirroring what was sneaked in draft timetables broadcasted last June. To help travel planning, the MTA will provide notification when full schedules, raising overall LIRR service by 41%, are prepared to go into effect.
The construction of Grand Central Madison, known as the East Side Access during development, started in 2006, with significant excavation work achieved in 2014. The project was worth $11 billion and included over 8 miles of tunnels in Manhattan and Queens, plus the new terminal, built under the historic Grand Central Terminal, which remained working during construction.
The opening of Grand Central Madison honors the first expansion of the Long Island Rail Road in 100 years. As claimed, it will cut travel times for LIRR East Side-bound commuters by providing a direct connection to Grand Central instead of travelling to Penn Station on the West Side.