Communication-Based Train Control for 8th Avenue Line

Communication-Based Train Control for 8th Avenue Line

New York, New York
United States
signal cable pulling train

TYLin is providing Consultant Construction Management (CCM) for the new communication-based train control of New York City Transit Authority’s 8th Avenue Line in New York, New York.

New York City Transit Authority’s (NYCT) 8th Avenue Line is undergoing a full signal modernization. TYLin is providing CCM and inspection services for the installation, testing, and commissioning of communication-based train control (CBTC) technology from 59th Street in Manhattan to High Street in Brooklyn, along with seven remote CBTC health check locations and two solid state interlockings (SSI) at 42nd Street & 34th Street. The modern technology will improve the reliability of transit service. 

The existing signal equipment, which has conventional mechanical signal technology, has been in service since the 1930s. The new CBTC technology is considered the international gold standard of signaling systems. It will allow greater train capacity in the 8th Avenue Corridor by deploying moving-block signaling. With moving-block signaling, equipment on trains and tracks communicates exact train locations, allowing trains to operate more closely together and thus more frequently. The result is a system that moves more people on less crowded trains.  

Other components of the CBTC system include wayside equipment and car-borne equipment. Wayside equipment, such as zone controllers, radios, and transponders, are installed on or near tracks. They communicate with trains to determine exact positions and direct them how to operate. Car-borne equipment are computers on trains that wirelessly communicate with the wayside (track side) equipment and control train movement based on instructions from the system. 

As part of the CBTC project, we will replace wayside signals and trip stops with axle counters in the automatic signal territory. This project will be the first at NYCT to have axle counters which provide a means of tracking non-CBTC or failed CBTC trains. We will also oversee the delivery and acceptance of CBTC car-borne equipment on two new car classes, R179-Siemens and R211-Thales. 

The project includes a renewal of the track switch machines; installation of two Solid State Interlockings at 34th Street and 42th Street; and modifications to the Chambers Street, Canal Street, 59th Street & 8th Avenue interlockings; CBTC wayside radios and radio network; CBTC zone controllers; and the CBTC automatic train supervision (ATS) at the Rail Control Center and various other workstation control points along the line. 

The total construction cost is approximately USD 732 million for the CBTC wayside and car-borne work.  

During the post construction cycle, we will test the system in “shadow” mode while the legacy signal system is in operation. This innovation will advance the testing schedule and provide NYCT with valuable train occupancy data to evaluate the system resiliency prior to placing it in-service. 

Project Highlights:

  • Our services include tasks related to technical expertise, construction management, field inspections, safety, quality, and scheduling.  
  • We are providing training for the Maintenance of Way and the Rail Traffic Operations teams. 
  • We are assisting NYCT with operating and maintenance procedures for the new Axle Counter System. 
  • The use of axle counters offers NYCT significantly reduced components and potential points of failure that will reduce service disruptions. 


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