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Hudson Line (Metro-North)


Hudson Line (Metro-North)

Hudson Line
A northbound Hudson Line train going through the Hudson Highlands
Type Commuter rail line
System Metro-North
Status Operating
Locale New York City, Westchester, Putnam, and Dutchess counties
Termini Grand Central Terminal
Stations 29
Daily ridership 38,500(2012)[1]
Owner Argent Ventures
Operator(s) Metro-North
Character Commuter rail
Track length 74 mi (118 km)
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in)
Electrification 700V (DC) third rail south of Croton–Harmon
Route map
CSX Hudson Subdivision
Poughkeepsie Yard
Zone 9
Zone 8
FDR Mid-Hudson Bridge
New Hamburg
Wappingers Creek
Newburgh–Beacon Bridge
Beacon Line
Fishkill Creek
Original ND&C diverges
Dutchess Junctionclosed
Zone 8
Zone 7
Breakneck Ridgeflag stop
Breakneck Tunnel
Cold Spring
Garrison Tunnel (southbound only)
Manitouflag stop
Bear Mountain Bridge
Anthony's Nose Tunnel
Middle Tunnel
Little Tunnel
Roa Hookclosed
Annsville Creek
Zone 7
Zone 6
Oscawana Tunnel
Zone 6
Zone 5
Croton Northclosed
end of electrification
Croton River
Philipse Manor
Zone 5
Zone 4
Tappan Zee Bridge
Dobbs Ferry
Zone 4
Zone 3
Mt. St. Vincentclosed
Zone 3
Zone 2
Empire Connection
Spuyten Duyvil Bridge
West 125th Streetproposed
West 62nd Streetproposed
Penn Station
Spuyten Duyvil
Marble Hill
Broadway Bridge
at "BN" the former Putnam Line diverges,
now known as "BN Yard"
University Heights Bridge
University Heights
Morris Heights
Washington Bridge
Alexander Hamilton Bridge
High Bridge
Highbridge Yard (employees only)
Major Deegan Expressway
Yankees – East 153rd Street
Diverging from Harlem / New Haven lines
138th St (closed)
Major Deegan Expressway
Park Avenue Bridge
Zone 2
Zone 1
Harlem–125th Street
110th St (closed)
Park Avenue Tunnel
86th St (closed)
72nd St (closed)
59th St (closed)
Grand Central Terminal

Metro-North Railroad's Hudson Line is a commuter rail line running north from New York City along the east shore of the Hudson River. Metro-North service ends at Poughkeepsie, with Amtrak's Empire Corridor trains continuing north to and beyond Albany. The line was originally the Hudson River Railroad (and the Spuyten Duyvil and Port Morris Railroad south of Spuyten Duyvil), and later part of the famous Water Level Route of the New York Central Railroad.

The Croton–Harmon station divides the two segments of the line. South of there, it is electrified, with third rail, where it serves suburban stations located more closely together. Most of the electrified zone has four tracks, usually express and local tracks in each direction. For a few miles in the Bronx there are only two or three tracks.

North of Croton–Harmon the line is mostly double-tracked, with a few three-track areas. The diesel trains that run to the more separated stops between Croton–Harmon and Poughkeepsie are generally expresses that skip most of the lower stations. From just north of Spuyten Duyvil to the end of the line, the Hudson Line is shared with Amtrak's various routes up the river.

Since the tracks continue north of Poughkeepsie, there have been various proposals over the years from both the MTA (Metro-North's parent agency) and Amtrak, to extend service northwards. Most have been scratched after strong opposition from residents of northern Dutchess County, who fear the effect on their still largely rural communities that being within an easy rail commute of midtown Manhattan would have. However, Poughkeepsie-area commuters have supported such plans since they would ease pressure on that station. As recently as January 2007, supervisors of some towns north of Poughkeepsie have expressed new interest in extending rail service.[2]


  • History 1
    • 2013 derailment 1.1
  • Line description 2
    • Manhattan and the Bronx 2.1
    • Westchester County 2.2
    • Putnam and Dutchess counties 2.3
  • Rolling stock 3
  • Stations 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6


The Hudson line was built by the Hudson River Railroad in 1851 as an extension to the Troy and Greenbush Railroad connecting Troy and Albany in the capital region. Cornelius Vanderbilt purchased the Hudson River Railroad in 1864 and merged it in 1869 with other short line railroads that Vanderbilt also owned including the New York and Harlem Railroad (Harlem Line). These two merged railroads were named the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad. It was renamed the New York Central Railroad in 1914.

The New York Central operated many intercity and commuter trains over this line for many years. It was a key route in connecting Grand Central Terminal in New York to LaSalle Street Station in Chicago. Commuter service along the line was offered as far north as Albany Union Station, with 121 trains serving Albany per day during the NYC's peak years.

At the end of the second world war, private rail service began a sharp decline with the start of the Jet Age and the construction of the Interstate Highway System. The New York Central began losing money on almost all commuter and intercity routes. They merged with their former rival the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1968 to form the Pennsylvania New York Central Transportation Company, which was later renamed the Penn Central Transportation Company. The railroad continued to lose money however. Penn Central attempted several maneuvers to delay bankruptcy including auctioning off the air rights of Grand Central Terminal; the Pennsylvania Railroad had done the same thing to their main New York station Penn Station. This however was denied, preserving Grand Central.

In 1971 the National Railroad Passenger Corporation took over all intercity passenger service in the US. Penn Central continued to operate freight and commuter service along the Hudson line until it was folded into Conrail in 1976. Conrail operated commuter service to Albany until it abandoned service north of Poughkeepsie in 1981 (though Amtrak's Empire Service continued to Albany and beyond). In 1983, the MTA Metro-North Railroad took control of all commuter operations in the Hudson Valley.

Since the discontinuation of commuter service to Albany, there have been proposals to restore service further north. Service as far as Hudson station has been proposed. Service to Hyde Park and Rhinecliff has also been proposed. Rhinecliff is already served by Amtrak. There are mixed feelings about extending service, with some supporting it for an easier commute and others disliking it for fear of their mainly small towns becoming an easy commute from Manhattan.

In 2009 a new station was opened at East 153rd Street in the Bronx, near Yankee Stadium. It sees regular service on the Hudson Line, plus special service from the Hudson, Harlem, and New Haven Lines for New York Yankees games.

2013 derailment

On December 1, 2013, a southbound train derailed near the Spuyten Duyvil station in the Bronx. Four people were killed and more than 60 passengers were injured in the crash.[3] Federal investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board determined that the train was traveling at 82 miles per hour (132 km/h), a speed nearly three times the maximum allowable speed of 30 miles per hour (48 km/h). The train's brakes were apparently operating normally and area tracks in proper condition.[4]

Line description

Despite its name, the Hudson Line does not reach the river until it has gone 11 miles (18 km) and six stations from Grand Central. Once along the river the view is nearly constant, with it visible much of the way to Poughkeepsie.

Manhattan and the Bronx

Once past 125th Street and over the Harlem River, the Hudson Line departs from the track shared with the Harlem and New Haven Lines, passing first Yankees – East 153rd Street, which offers access to the lower Bronx and Yankee Stadium. After it is the employee-only Highbridge stop as it follows the river northward and, at first, the Major Deegan Expressway.

Marble Hill, technically in Manhattan despite being on the mainland, offers a transfer to the IRT Broadway – Seventh Avenue Line of the New York City Subway at the Marble Hill – 225th Street station. A short curve away brings the trains to Spuyten Duyvil and its stairs to the street. Just past the station, the track rejoins the original Hudson River Railroad, shared with Amtrak, and after one more stop at Riverdale is out of New York City.

The West Side Line (right, un-electrified) joins the Hudson Line just north of Spuyten Duyvil.

Westchester County

Tarrytown station on the Hudson Line

The Palisades present themselves across the river as trains pass through the city of Yonkers and its four stops, mostly local. A few express trains do stop at the recently renovated Yonkers station, the first where a transfer to Amtrak is possible.

Smaller, local-only suburban stations are passed as the Tappan Zee Bridge appears to the north and the river widens. Finally, between Irvington and Tarrytown, it passes overhead. Rockland County fades to almost three miles (4.8 km) away across Haverstraw Bay. But after passing through Sing Sing prison, the train reaches Ossining, where a ferry brings travelers across the wide river.

Electric trains end their runs one stop beyond, at Croton–Harmon, a terminal shared again with Amtrak just south of Harmon Yard and east of Croton Point. The tracks veer inland, closely following US 9, to the next and newest stop, Cortlandt, the only non-New York City station on the line where the Hudson River cannot be seen.

It reappears at Peekskill, the last stop in the county, where the Bear Mountain Bridge can be seen to the north.

Putnam and Dutchess counties

North of Peekskill the river narrows as the Hudson Highlands begin. Dunderberg and Bear mountains can be seen across the river. The train passes through two short tunnels, one under the Bear Mountain Bridge abutment. Putnam County's first station, Manitou, serves a small hamlet. Just north of Garrison, there is another tunnel and then a view of the stone buildings of West Point; the riverside village of Cold Spring is the next stop, last in the county.

The Dutchess County line is crossed in a pair of 842-foot (257 m) tunnels under Breakneck Ridge at Breakneck Point; across the river Storm King Mountain is seen. The Breakneck Ridge flag stop marks the end of the Highlands as the river once again broadens around Newburgh Bay. At Beacon, ferry service is available during peak hours to Newburgh, whose skyline is visible across the river, and shortly after leaving the train passes under the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge.

Just upriver is New Hamburg, a hamlet of the Town of Poughkeepsie and a station closed in the NYCRR days but eventually reopened. The last 8.5 miles to Poughkeepsie's recently renovated station, including the vast Tilcon quarry, is the longest distance between any two stations on a Metro-North main line.

Rolling stock

Electric service from and to Croton–Harmon uses the standard M3A and M7A multiple units also seen on the Metro-North Harlem Line and the Long Island Rail Road, as M3 and M7. Diesel trains are headed by Genesis P32AC-DMs. Turning the locomotives around at either end of the line would be cumbersome and time-consuming, so trains use push-pull operation with the locomotive usually on the north end of the train. They usually pull/push six or seven Shoreliner passenger cars with a cab car at the south end of the train.

The Genesis locomotives are mostly in Metro-North's silver-and-blue colors, but sometimes the red, black and white scheme inherited from the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad can be seen as equipment on the line is pooled with ConnDOT, whose red-striped passenger coaches are also in wide use on the Hudson Line. The Metro-North-owned Genesis units received a new paint scheme in 2007.


Milepost Zero on the Hudson Line is at the north property line of 42nd St (i.e. 200–300 ft south of the ends of the tracks). The Marble Hill Cutoff shortened the line by 0.73 mile circa 1906, so Yonkers station (for example) is at milepost 15.24 but is about 14.46 miles from end of track at GCT.

Zone Station Miles (km)
from GCT
Connections / notes
1 Grand Central Terminal Handicapped/disabled access 0.0 (0.0) October 6, 1871[5] Metro-North: Harlem and New Haven lines
NYC Subway:     (at Grand Central – 42nd Street)
Bus transport NYCT Bus: M1, M2, M3, M4, M42, M101, M102, M103, Q32, X2, X5, X10, X12, X14, X22, X22A, X27, X28, X31, X37, X38, X42, X63, X64, X68
Bus transport MTA Bus: BxM1, QM21
Originally Grand Central Depot, then Grand Central Station
59th Street
72nd Street
86th Street May 15, 1876[6] c. 1903[6]
110th Street c. 1900
Harlem – 125th Street Handicapped/disabled access 4.2 (6.8) 1897[7] Metro-North: Harlem and New Haven lines
NYC Subway:   (at 125th Street)
Bus transport NYCT Bus: M1 (NB), M35, M60 SBS to LGA, M98, M100, M101, Bx15
Manhattan / Bronx border
138th Street 1886[8] 1972
Harlem / New Haven Lines diverge
Yankees – East 153rd Street Handicapped/disabled access 5.9 (9.5) May 23, 2009[9] Metro-North: Harlem and New Haven Lines (game days only)
NYC Subway: (at 161st Street – Yankee Stadium)
Bus transport NYCT Bus: Bx6, Bx13
SeaStreak to Highlands Terminal
Highbridge 6.7 (10.8) Metro-North employees only, closed to passengers in the 1970s
Morris Heights Handicapped/disabled access 8.1 (13.0) Bus transport NYCT Bus: Bx18, Bx40, Bx42
University Heights Handicapped/disabled access 8.7 (14.0) Bus transport NYCT Bus: Bx12, Bx12 SBS
Fordham Heights Merged into University Heights station before 1920
Bronx / Manhattan border
Marble Hill 9.8 (15.8) 1906[10] NYC Subway: (at Marble Hill – 225th Street)
Bus transport NYCT Bus: Bx7, Bx9, Bx20
Bus transport MTA Bus: BxM1
Manhattan / Bronx border
Kings Bridge c. 1905 Removed during 1905-06 realignment of Hudson Branch along the Harlem River Ship Canal[11]
Spuyten Duyvil Handicapped/disabled access 11.1 (17.9) Bus transport Hudson Rail Link: J, K, L, M
Southbound platform is not accessible
Riverdale Handicapped/disabled access 13.0 (20.9) Bus transport Hudson Rail Link: A, B, C, D
Mt. St. Vincent 1979 Served the College of Mount Saint Vincent
Bronx / Westchester County border
3 Ludlow Handicapped/disabled access 14.3 (23.0) Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 32
Southbound platform is not accessible
Yonkers Handicapped/disabled access 15.1 (24.3) 1911 Amtrak: Adirondack, Empire Service, Ethan Allen Express, Maple Leaf
Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 6, 9, 25, 32
Glenwood Handicapped/disabled access 16.2 (26.1) Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 1C, 1T, 1W
Greystone Handicapped/disabled access 17.8 (28.6) 1899 Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 1C, 1T, 1W
Originally Harriman
4 Hastings-on-Hudson Handicapped/disabled access 19.5 (31.4) 1840s[12] Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 6, 1C, 1T, 1W
Dobbs Ferry Handicapped/disabled access 20.7 (33.3) Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 1C, 1T, 1W, 6, 66
Ardsley-on-Hudson Handicapped/disabled access 21.7 (34.9) c. 1900
Irvington Handicapped/disabled access 22.7 (36.5) Southbound platform is not accessible
5 Tarrytown Handicapped/disabled access 25.2 (40.6) Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 1T, 13
Bus transport Transport of Rockland: Tappan ZEExpress
Philipse Manor 26.5 (42.6) 1910[13]
Scarborough Handicapped/disabled access 29.5 (47.5) before 1860[14]
Ossining Handicapped/disabled access 30.8 (49.6) 1848 Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 11, 13, 14, 19
NY Waterway: Haverstraw–Ossining Ferry
Originally Sing-Sing
Croton–Harmon Handicapped/disabled access 33.2 (53.4) Amtrak: Adirondack, Empire Service, Ethan Allen Express, Lake Shore Limited, Maple Leaf
Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 10, 11, 14
Terminus of electrification
Originally Harmon
Croton North[15] c. 1890[16]
Revived briefly by Metro-North from 1983 to 1984.[17]
Crugers Replaced in 1996 by Cortlandt
Cortlandt Handicapped/disabled access 38.4 (61.8) April 1996[18] Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 14
Montrose Replaced in 1996 by Cortlandt
Peekskill Handicapped/disabled access 41.2 (66.3) 1874[19] Bus transport Bee-Line Bus: 16, 18, 31
Roa Hook
Westchester County / Putnam County border
7 Manitou 46.0 (74.0) Limited service
Garrison Handicapped/disabled access 49.9 (80.3)
Cold Spring Handicapped/disabled access 52.5 (84.5) Bus transport Putnam Transit: Cold Spring Trolley (seasonal)
Storm King[20] South side of the Breakneck Ridge Tunnels
Putnam County / Dutchess County border
Breakneck Ridge 55.0 (88.5)
Dutchess Junction c. 1866 1950s Located south of junction with Newburgh, Dutchess and Connecticut Railroad (eliminated in 1916)
Beacon Handicapped/disabled access 59.0 (95.0) Bus transport Dutchess County LOOP: Beacon RailLink
Bus transport Leprechaun Lines: Newburgh-Beacon-Stewart Shuttle
NY Waterway: Newburgh-Beacon Ferry
Chelsea[21] 1901 c. 1970
New Hamburg 65.0 (104.6) Bus transport Dutchess County LOOP: New Hamburg RailLink
Camelot[22] Now cut off by a mine in Crown Heights
Poughkeepsie Handicapped/disabled access 73.5 (118.3) Amtrak: Adirondack, Empire Service, Ethan Allen Express, Lake Shore Limited, Maple Leaf
Bus transport Dutchess County LOOP: A, B, C, D, E, Poughkeepsie RailLink
Bus transport City of Poughkeepsie Transit: Main Street, Shoppers' Special
Bus transport Ulster County Area Transit: Ulster-Poughkeepsie LINK
Bus transport Short Line Bus: X32N
Bus transport Trailways of New York: Newburgh-Kingston service
Line continues northward as CSX's Hudson Subdivision
Stations north of Poughkeepsie other than existing Amtrak stations were abandoned by Conrail in 1981
  Hyde Park 1914[23] 1981
Staatsburgh 1981
Rhinecliff 1914 Now Amtrak's Rhinecliff-Kingston station
Barrytown 1981
Tivoli 1981
Dutchess County / Columbia County border
Germantown 1981
Linlithgo 1981
Greendale 1981
Hudson 1874 Former junction with Boston and Albany Railroad's Hudson Branch, Still used by Amtrak
Stockport 1981
Newton Hook 1981
Stuyvesant 1880[24] 1981
Schodack Landing 1981
Castleton 1981
Rensselaer 1981 Junction with Boston and Albany Railroad's Main Line
Columbia County / Albany County border
Albany 1900[25] 1986 Also served Boston and Albany Railroad, West Shore Railroad, and Delaware and Hudson Railroad
Northern terminus of NYC Hudson Division until 1981.


  1. ^ "MTA Metro-North Railroad Ridership Increased in 2012". 
  2. ^ Metro-North weighs northward expansion (United Transportation Union; Jan. 4, 2007)
  3. ^ Barron, James; Goodman, J. David (1 December 2013). "4 Dead in Metro-North Train Derailment in the Bronx". The New York Times. Retrieved 1 December 2013. 
  4. ^ Flegenheimer, Matt (2 December 2013). "Metro-North Train Sped at 82 M.P.H. Into 30 M.P.H. Zone Before Crash". The New York Times. Retrieved 3 December 2013. 
  5. ^ "The Grand Central Railroad Depot, Harlem Railroad.".  
  6. ^ a b 86th Street; Park Avenue (Brennan's Abandoned Stations web-site)
  7. ^ Bronx Railroad Stations (Brennan's Abandoned Stations web-site)
  8. ^ Penn Central ACMU 1044 at 138th Street Station; May 21, 1972 by Joe Testagrose (
  9. ^ "MTA Metro-North Railroad To Open New Train Station in New York City To Serve Southwest Bronx and Yankee Stadium" (Press release).  
  10. ^ Documents of the Senate of the State of New York: Volume 3 (1907)
  11. ^ File:1899 Home Life Map of New York City ( Manhattan and the Bronx ) - Geographicus - NYC-HomeLife-1899.jpg
  12. ^ Hastings Historical Society. Images of America: Hastings-on-Hudson.  
  13. ^ Kuhn, Robert (January 1991). "National Register of Historic Places nomination, Philipse Manor Railroad Station".  
  14. ^ "The Collision on the Hudson River Railroad.; Coroner's Inquest at Yonkers--Testimony Conflicting.". The New York Times. January 24, 1860. Retrieved August 11, 2014. 
  15. ^ 1997 Photo by Marty Feldner (Existing Railroad Stations in Westchester County, New York)
  16. ^ Neil Larson (July 1987). "National Register of Historic Places Registration:Croton North Railroad Station".  
  17. ^ Image of 1984 Metro-North Hudson Line schedule (
  18. ^ Hershenson, Roberta (September 8, 1996). "Cortlandt Welcomes New Train Station".  
  19. ^ Butcher, Faith Ann (July 9, 2011). "Ossining, Peekskill Historic Railroad Buildings Available to Rent". The Examiner News. Retrieved July 9, 2011. 
  20. ^ Storm King New York Central station (Robert Mortell's Road and Rail Pictures)
  21. ^ Chelsea New York Central station (Robert Mortell's Road and Rail Pictures)
  22. ^ Camelot New York Central station (Robert Mortell's Road and Rail Pictures)
  23. ^ "Hyde Park Station History". January 25, 2003. Retrieved 2007-11-17. 
  24. ^ Thomas E. Rinaldi, Rob Yasinsac (2006). Hudson Valley Ruins: Forgotten Landmarks of an American Landscape, p.71.  
  25. ^ Liebs, Chester H. (July 1970). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory/Nomination: Albany Union Station". Retrieved 2011-07-10.  and Accompanying two photos, exterior, from 1905 and undated

External links

  • – Hudson Line
  • Hudson Line Schedules
  • Route on OpenStreetMap
  • NYC Hudson Division - Troy to Oscawana and Croton North to GCT (Road and Rail Pictures)
  • Penn Central Railroad: Hudson, Harlem and other nearby Divisions; April 28, 1968
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