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Superstorm Sandy: Fix&Fortify Efforts Continue
Metro-North continues to restore infrastructure
Following Sandy’s destruction, Metro-North completed a system-wide damage assessment on the condition of the infrastructure. Brackish water from the Hudson Line damaged 3rd rail traction power substations and elements, communications and signal components, 30 miles of communications cables, Harlem River Lift Bridge power facilities and eroded significant areas of the Hudson River shoreline. Latent damage from salt water infiltration has significantly reduced the useful life of power and communications and signal components. Electronic components that did not immediately fail are failing prematurely due to the exposure to salt water. This not only affects reliability, it affects the cost of maintaining the system.
Metro-North developed projects and implementation strategies to restore infrastructure to pre-Sandy conditions and improve system resiliency against future natural disasters. $313 million in repair and restoration projects were identified for funding through the FTA’s Sandy Emergency Repair Program:
Resiliency measures to better protect the repaired infrastructure (e.g., raising and waterproofing structures and equipment as they are replaced etc.) are being incorporated into the restoration work as feasible, and Metro-North has established new design guidelines for all capital projects that outline how assets can be relocated, elevated, and/or protected in place to make infrastructure more resilient to flood damage..
In addition to repairing what was damaged and ensuring all new infrastructure is more resilient, Metro-North is seeking FTA resiliency funding for specific projects that will improve the agency’s ability to recovery after a storm. Resiliency projects with funding identified to date include work to protect critical vulnerable power and signal infrastructure at substations, interlockings and yards and the purchase of specialized equipment to facilitate a swift response in emergency storm situations to maintain drainage structures and a stabilized shoreline.
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