The East Bridgeport Yard has long been both a layover for revenue equipment, as well as a maintenance of way (MOW) base for the Metro North Railroad-operated New Haven Line service. When the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) expanded its revenue fleet and embarked on a multi-year reconstruction of its New Haven Yard and facilities, the need arose for additional storage tracks for revenue equipment, and the 18-acre East Bridgeport Yard was identified for expansion.
With a goal to add storage capacity for 100 cars, provide the infrastructure necessary for light servicing, and develop a new MOW base within the yard, CTDOT engaged VHB to prepare preliminary and final design plans, specifications, and cost estimates for the necessary improvements. The design included reconfiguring the existing rail yard to add five revenue storage tracks, constructing three new MOW storage tracks, and reorganizing and relocating the MOW materials storage areas. The design work included electrification of the five revenue storage tracks, water and power feeds for light servicing of the revenue trains, a new transformer for yard power, organization of a new MOW materials storage area, and new yard access roads. A permeable pavement design was developed for parking areas to minimize the impact of stormwater runoff. VHB also assisted CTDOT with the preparation of a Categorical Exclusion to address the NEPA process under the Federal Transit Administration’s guidelines, as well as with design services during construction, including shop drawing reviews, field design changes, and other design related services.
The design needed to address the requirement that the facility remain in operation 24/7 during construction, so a multi-phase set of construction staging and sequencing plans were developed in cooperation with Metro North Railroad operations staff. The detailed phasing plans, track and power outage charts, and schedules helped the contractor understand the construction program in relationship to the railroad’s operational needs.