Largest Pre-Fabricated Power Substation in USA Assembled in Harold Interlocking for East Side Access

The largest pre-fabricated traction power substation in the USA was delivered and assembled in Queens in July as part of the LIRR East Side Access project. The substation was fabricated by Myers Controlled Power, LLC at its facility in North Canton, OH, and delivered to the site in 20 sections – each section spans over 45 feet wide and weighs up to 96,000 lbs. 

Traction power substations power the third rail by converting AC voltage from the electric grid to DC voltage, which is fed to the third rail out on the tracks. This electrical power then energizes each train’s traction motor, the electric motor which propels the train. Nine new traction power substations are being constructed as part of East Side Access (below).

East Side Access - 08-20-19There are currently 104 substations on the LIRR across all areas of the Railroad’s electrified territory.

Each of the pre-fabricated sections of the C08 substation was trucked to Queens, NY, where a concrete base had already been constructed to support the structure. During the third weekend of July, all 20 sections were placed onto the concrete base using a 180 ft crane, one of the project’s largest.   

Two of the traction power substations constructed for East Side Access (G02 and C08) were pre-fabricated in sections off site and then assembled in place. Once the substation’s structure is assembled, all the built-in electrical components are connected to temporary power to undergo extensive testing; the substations are then fully energized once they are connected to the electrical grid. You can read more about the energization of the G02 Traction Power Substation here –

East Side Access is one of the largest transportation infrastructure projects currently underway in the United States. East Side Access provides new, direct LIRR service into a new concourse below Grand Central Terminal on Manhattan’s East Side, reducing commutes into Manhattan by up to 40 minutes. The project encompasses work in multiple locations throughout Manhattan and Queens and includes more than eight miles of tunneling.

East Side Access is an integral component of the broader LIRR system expansion initiative to help reduce passenger crowding, train congestion and automobile traffic, and to provide connections with additional regional transportation options such as Metro North Railroad and New York City Transit subways; East Side Access will also alleviate train and passenger congestion at New York Penn Station and its neighboring subway stations. Passengers traveling from Midtown East will enjoy easier access to JFK International Airport via the AirTrain at LIRR’s Jamaica Station.

When completed, East Side Access will serve approximately 162,000 customers a day, providing them with a faster and easier commute from Long Island and Queens to the east side of Manhattan in a new eight-track terminal and concourse below Grand Central Terminal. For more information and photos of ongoing construction, please visit the East Side Access project page on –