The rehabilitation of the former dirt lot included the installation of new drainage, curbs, sidewalks, asphalt paving, lighting, striping, signage, fencing and landscaping. Work is now under way on the eastern half of the lot. In addition to the new spaces, customers may find alternative parking in the garage as work on the eastern half of the lot continues. Handicapped and additional street-level parking may also be found in areas to the west of the garage and bus loop.
When completed, the eastern half of the lot will have approximately 184 spaces. In all, there will be 294 rehabilitated spaces when the work is completed during the first quarter of 2010. Approximately $4 million is budgeted for the Ronkonkoma parking lot rehab under the Capital Program. There are approximately 6,095 parking spaces at the Ronkonkoma Station. Since 1986, more than 14,000 new, rehabilitated or replacement parking spaces have been added in the LIRR service area under the MTA LIRR Capital Program.
Also, effective now through mid-December 2009, MTA Staten Island Railway advises customers to allow extra travel time as trains may need to move at slower speeds due to fallen leaves on the tracks. Fallen leaves, when crushed by moving trains, leave a slippery residue on the running rails. This residue may affect the train's ability to move and stop. In order to ensure safe operation, trains may operate at reduced speeds and/or operate at slower than normal speeds while entering or leaving stations.
"Crushed leaves present us with one of our biggest seasonal operational challenges," said John G. Gaul, chief officer of the Staten Island Railway. "It's an industry-wide problem for rail systems that operate outdoors in highly-vegetated areas made worse by such conditions as light rain or morning dew."