ESDC and FCRC have issued a supplemental construction alert giving notice that work in Vanderbilt railyard will be extended to 24 hours a day for some periods through June. Work already takes place in the railyard from 6 AM to 3 AM. The notice states that working hours are being expanded to help speed up the reconstruction of the Carlton Avenue Bridge. Work to reconstruct the bridge began in December 2010, nearly 3 years after it was closed for reconstruction.
According to the notice, plumbing work scheduled over the next few weeks and located in the section of the railyard between Carlton and Vanderbilt Avenues cannot be executed while other work is taking place there. It is described as "quiet work" that will be localized and intermittent. The work will be lit either by the LIRR yard's permanent lights (only those lights in the vicinity of the work), or by portable lights.
The hours the lights will be used will be expanded again when the "cutover" of LIRR operations from the southern tracks to the northern tracks takes place. Around the clock work will occur immediately before and during the cutover, which will take place over the course of two weekends in mid-June. Moving LIRR operations to the northern tracks is the next step in the construction of the railyard. The southern half now has to be lowered 27 feet to be at the same height as the recently excavated northern half.
Numerous complaints about the lights spilling over into nearby residences have been received by AYW. In the past, neighbors residing near the railyard have noted all the yard lights have been turned on even when a small number of workers have been concentrated in just a portion of the two-block area. ESDC has previously stated the lights can only be turned on separately with difficulty, and that when construction work takes place the entire yard must be illuminated for safety requirements. The lights were originally installed to be used for LIRR operations and repairs. The contract between LIRR and FCRC was apparently revised in the fall of 2011 to enable the use of lights by FCRC contractors for construction.
Members of the PHNDC board, (a sponsor of AYW), were previously told the cutover would take place May 28. The new date in mid-June could mean there is a delay in the railyard work, on which the reopening of the Carlton Avenue Bridge depends. Atlantic Yards Report has published a site observation report from Merrit & Harris, which states the bridge is expected to be complete October 3rd, five days after the opening of Barclays Center. The report also states the ESDC has asked FCRC to develop a mitigation plan in case the bridge is not complete. Substantial completion of the Carlton Avenue Bridge is cited in the Atlantic Yards Master Development Agreement as a condition for the opening of the arena, and holding the first public event at the arena prior to satisfaction of the arena opening conditions is an event of default under the MDA.