The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

beggars crouched

with one comment

“follow” me on Twitter at @newtownpentacle

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Personal velocity seems to be at an all time low, lords and ladies, as your humble narrator must have seen too many winters. A shut in and seemingly partial invalid, at least cognitively, one must do with the few pleasures left to him as the end is likely nigh and sure to be horrible. An insubstantial element of joy, however, has been watching the painfully slow processes at work around the Sunnyside Yards as the East Side access project incarnates.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Vast, the part of the project walked through in today’s post is the fascinating and parallel insertion of a second track on the LIRR main line.

My comprehension of the situation is limited, but as I understand- it involves the requirements of Amtrak, which gave up some amount of allotted space and track rights at Sunnyside Yard to the City and State project, on condition that it no longer suffer schedule interruptions due to LIRR breakdowns or bottlenecks. It seems that even with Amtrak’s former holdings, frequent service delays experienced by the LIRR rippled out from NY and across the Northeast corridor rail network.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Your humble narrator is a relative late comer to the story of the railroads, and there are incredible gaps in my understanding of the system. One thing which I’ve never been able to clarify for myself is why there isn’t more active rail at work.

Once upon a time, in the City of New York, there were miles of active tracks servicing thousands of individual businesses. The plan which is actively under construction will ostensibly improve passenger service, but what about freight?


Remember that event in the fall which got cancelled due to Hurricane Sandy?

The “Up the Creek” Magic Lantern Show presented by the Obscura Society NYC is back on at Observatory.

Click here or the image below for more information and tickets.


One Response

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  1. The following link should be helpful, from the web page “”, a site dedicated to the LIRR; it has comprehensive maps of the sidings and a listing of the industries that used them.

    Bob Leidy

    January 23, 2013 at 3:50 pm

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