Automatic Train Control (ATC), PATH Newark, New Jersey


The Port Authority Trans-Hudson Corporation (PATH) operates a full-time rail system connecting New York and New Jersey with 43 track miles through two tunnels under the Hudson River. The aging PATH system, over 100 years old, was upgraded to Automatic Train Control (ATC) using Communication-Based Train Control (CBTC) technology. In addition to the ATC implementation, a state-of-the-art conventional signal system was designed and installed on the PATH system. MCSS was a member of the CH2M Hill Program Management Team on the PATH ATC Project. MCSS personnel reviewed and evaluated schedules and estimated costs for complex software, hardware, signal equipment, and systems-related change orders. MCSS took a lead role in signal design by reviewing and monitoring the contractor’s AWS/CBTC interface, as well as a lead role in construction by providing the Construction Manager responsible for overseeing all field installation work. Additionally, MCSS provided signal construction field inspection services, contributing to the successful upgrade and modernization of the PATH system.

Some of the challenges on this project were: The system in question was indeed complex, involving a combination of numerous equipment and various sub-systems subject to human factors; Ensuring that the multiple software modules involved would work together properly with the appropriate debug means was crucial for the project’s success; High availability objectives were set for the overall system, which had to be able to handle multiple degraded modes that could not be easily reproduced on-site which demanded thorough planning and meticulous execution to meet the desired reliability and performance standards; Site access was limited and expensive, making it essential to stabilize the system as much as possible before delivering it to the site. By addressing these challenges effectively, the project team could ensure a smooth implementation and minimize potential issues, ultimately contributing to the successful completion of this intricate and demanding project.

Construction costs over $300M

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