The LIRR Expansion Project team is committed to coordinating construction activities with school districts in the project corridor. On January 15th, the project team met with Stewart Manor School Principal Hope Kranidis, Assistant Principal Cynthia Cameron and Director of Technology Fernando DeBartolo to discuss ongoing construction activities, the community outreach program and the project’s cutting-edge educational STEM program. STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in four specific disciplines — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — in an interdisciplinary and applied approach. Rather than teach the four disciplines as separate and discrete subjects, STEM integrates them into a cohesive learning paradigm based on real-world applications.
The LIRR Expansion Project’s STEM and Safety Educational Program is a collaborative effort with schools and other education organizations along the project corridor. The purpose of the STEM and Safety Education Program is to:
- foster relationships with schools and students along the project corridor
- inspire interest in the LIRR Expansion Project
- encourage students to apply STEM studies to a real-world, local project
- to expose students to STEM professionals
Covert Avenue is the western border of Stewart Manor. The Covert Avenue grade crossing is one of seven street-level crossings along the LIRR Main Line to be eliminated as part of the LIRR Expansion Project from Floral Park to Hicksville. Currently, the Covert Avenue grade crossing poses a safety risk to drivers, pedestrians and LIRR customers; contributes to noise and air pollution; and is responsible for lengthy commutes for both drivers and LIRR customers. Specifically, as trains approach the station in New Hyde Park, grade crossing gates are in the down position 32 to 42 percent of the time in the AM and PM peak hour periods. The need for grade crossing elimination is further illustrated by the fact that there was a total of six fatal crashes at grade crossing locations in the LIRR Main Line corridor between 2007 to 2017.
The Covert Avenue grade crossing will be eliminated and reconstructed to provide a two-lane grade-separated underpass with a pedestrian sidewalk on the east side of the underpass. This reconstructed grade crossing was designed in conjunction with the Village of New Hyde Park and will enhance safety and provide for a quieter and more livable community along the railroad. The construction of a third track from Floral Park to Hicksville will reduce train congestion and delays and enable true bi-directional service during peak hours with a more reliable rail network. This transformative work includes several related projects, including the construction of up to five parking garages, retaining walls, improvements to rail bridges and the removal of seven street-level grade crossings.
For more information, please visit the Covert Avenue Grade Crossing Elimination project page on AModernLI.com – http://www.amodernli.com/project/covert-avenue-grade-crossing-elimination/.