May 24 Set for Resumption of Atlantic City Rail Line Service

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NEWARK — NJ TRANSIT (NJT) will begin restoring rail service that has been subject to temporary service adjustments in the second quarter of 2019, starting with the Atlantic City Rail Line (ACRL) and the Princeton Branch (Dinky).

According to a release, the agency continues to address a continuing shortage of locomotive engineers, as well as equipment availability, as Positive Train Control (PTC) installations, maintenance inspections and testing continues. NJ TRANSIT will communicate updates as new information becomes available.

NJT Executive Director Kevin Corbett stated the agency is focused on restoring consistent, dependable service.

“We recognize the impact that these service adjustments have had on our valued customers, particularly those who use our ACRL and Princeton Dinky services. Our goal is to begin restoring a service that remains reliable and predictable for customers as quickly as possible,” Corbett said. “I share our customers’ frustration and thank them for their continued patience during this time. While service reliability has improved since Jan. 1, that’s no consolation when it’s your train that is affected.”

Atlantic City Rail Line

NJ TRANSIT remains committed to reopening the Atlantic City Rail Line (ACRL) as soon as possible.  In recognition of the continued impact on ACRL customers, NJ TRANSIT will extend the 25 percent discount on ACRL tickets and passes until service is restored.

The following alternate transportation options remain in effect for the ACRL:

    NJ TRANSIT Bus Route No. 340 Lindenwold Atlantic City Express Shuttle – This shuttle will operate as an express route between Atlantic City Bus Terminal and Lindenwold PATCO, making stops only at the Absecon and Egg Harbor City rail stations.  Service will operate daily, throughout the day, at a similar frequency to the ACRL.

    NJ TRANSIT Bus Route No. 340 Cherry Hill - Lindenwold – This route, which replaces the former Cherry Hill - Pennsauken - WRTC Shuttle, will provide Cherry Hill customers with access to PATCO at Lindenwold for travel to/from Philadelphia and connections to the No. 340 Atlantic City – Lindenwold Express service to Atlantic City. Pennsauken customers will continue to have River LINE service available to WRTC for transfer to PATCO for travel to/from Philadelphia and Lindenwold.

    NJ TRANSIT Bus Route No. 417 Pennsauken Transit Center – 30th St. Station Philadelphia – This route will cross-honor rail tickets and passes with an origin or destination of Philadelphia. Customers must have a rail ticket or pass with a Philadelphia origin or destination for travel on this route at no additional charge.

    NJ TRANSIT Bus Route No. 555 Avandale Park-Ride - 30th St. Station Philadelphia – This route will cross-honor rail tickets and passes with an origin or destination of Philadelphia. Customers must have a rail ticket or pass with a Philadelphia origin or destination for travel on this route at no additional charge.

    NJ TRANSIT Bus Route No. 551 Express – This route will cross-honor rail tickets with an origin or destination of Atlantic City or Philadelphia and will be accepted at Atlantic City Bus Terminal (AC Bus Terminal), Avandale Park-Ride (Sicklerville), Walter Rand Transportation Center (WRTC), Camden and Greyhound Bus Terminal (10th and Filbert streets, Philadelphia).

    NJ TRANSIT Bus Route No. 554 – The No. 554 will cross-honor all rail tickets and passes and provide hourly service to/from all rail stations between Atlantic City and Lindenwold.

    All NJT bus routes serving Center City Philadelphia from Walter Rand Transportation Center (WRTC) in Camden – These routes will cross-honor rail tickets and passes with an origin or destination of Philadelphia. Customers must have a rail ticket or pass with a Philadelphia origin or destination for travel on these routes at no additional charge.

    PATCO (Lindenwold, Walter Rand Transportation Center (WRTC) in Camden and 8th St./Market St. ONLY) – PATCO will cross-honor rail tickets and passes with an origin or destination of Philadelphia at Lindenwold, WRTC in Camden and 8th St./Market St. in Philadelphia for service to/from Philadelphia. Customers must have a rail ticket or pass with a Philadelphia origin or destination for travel on PATCO at no additional charge. Customers should retain their rail tickets and passes for cross honoring on PATCO.

    River LINE – Tickets with an origin or destination of Philadelphia will be accepted for travel between any two stations on the River LINE.

Princeton Branch (Dinky)

Princeton Shuttle (Dinky) Bus Service for travel between Princeton and Princeton Junction remains in effect. Click here for shuttle bus schedule information.

Important Notes:

    NJ TRANSIT is reminding rail customers that the ten-percent discount offered on tickets and passes will conclude on January 31st.  The reduced fares began in November in recognition of the service impacts required to accommodate the accelerated installation of Positive Train Control (PTC) equipment on locomotives and cab control cars to meet the federal 2018 year-end milestone.

    Customers should continue to purchase their Atlantic City Rail Line tickets & passes as they do today to take advantage of the 25-percent discount and the available cross-honoring options with PATCO and NJ TRANSIT bus. Rail ticket vending machines will continue to be available at all ACRL stations.

    The Atlantic City Rail Station will remain open during this time and customers will still be able to utilize parking there.

        The 340 Express Shuttle to Lindenwold, the 551 Express to Philadelphia and the 554 local bus making all rail station stops to Lindenwold will arrive and depart from the Atlantic City Bus Terminal.

        A special Jitney shuttle will be established to connect the AC Rail Terminal with the AC Bus Terminal for those who cannot or do not wish to walk the short distance between the parking at the AC Convention Center/Rail Terminal and the Bus Terminal.

    ACRL customers utilizing PATCO to/from Philadelphia will not have service to/from 30th Street Station in Philadelphia. Customers will board/exit PATCO at the 8th St./Market St. Station in Philadelphia.

    Atlantic City casino jitney bus service will not operate to/from the Atlantic City Rail Terminal. This service will relocate to/from the Atlantic City Bus Terminal.

    Temporary Ticket Vending Machines (TVMs) will be available at the PATCO 8th Street/Market St. Station to purchase NJ TRANSIT rail tickets to be cross honored on PATCO.

    Rail tickets will be sold at TVMs at the Atlantic City Bus Terminal and Greyhound Bus Terminal located at 10th and Filbert streets in Philadelphia.

*****

U.S. Rep. Jeff Van Drew issued the following statement Jan. 25 after learning of the above:

Upon learning about the news that New Jersey Transit will delay completion of the Atlantic City Rail Line (ACRL) by up to five additional months, U.S. Rep. Van Drew (D-2nd) issued the following:

“The lack of communication and the delay of the ACRL’s restoration line is completely unacceptable, causing extreme frustration for South Jersey commuters and impacting our regional economy.”

Since September of 2018, New Jersey Transit has been installing Positive Train Control (PTC) equipment on its rail fleet throughout the state and all service on the ACRL has been suspended. The repair work was government mandated, but New Jersey Transit promised that this will be done by January 2019 because of the disruption it causes to the nearly 2,000 daily commuters who depended on the rail. January 2019 is now coming to a close, and there is no end in sight to the construction.

Van Drew stated at the closing of the rail, “If they don’t get it done in January, or real close to January, I will tell you just from my personal point, there is going to be a firestorm because I’m going to do everything I can, and it may not be pleasant.”

“It feels like South Jersey is getting the short end of the stick and I will not tolerate this. I am immediately going to call New Jersey Transit and find out what the hell is going on and respond accordingly.”

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