The LIRR line in question, when it was active
After hearing about the feasibility study RFPs issued by the Trust for Public Land, we’ve learned of a concerted push for the alternate plan for the abandoned rail line – turning it back into a working train line. Two Congressmen representing southern Queens - Representatives Hakeem Jeffries (D-Brooklyn) and Greg Meeks (D-Jamaica) plan to “endorse the proposal and push to allocate federal transportation subsidies to study a plan for bringing rail service back.” Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D-Rockaway Park) also supports turning the line back on.
If this line was back to a working LIRR line, it would drastically cut commute times. Right now, the way to get into the city is by the A train (which is under construction right now), and that takes a while – over an hour. If the LIRR line were reactivated, it would only take 40 minutes to get from the peninsula to Penn Station, as was the case in the 1950s when the line was active. Additionally, having a quicker trip to and from the Rockaways would be good for development and business on the peninsula. Hurricane Sandy ruined a lot of things, and interested folks are looking to all sorts of ways to boost business in the area.
It will be interesting to see what happens!