The Metropolitan Transportation Authority Board has authorized between 60 and 94 new M8 rail cars for Metro-North Railroad’s New Haven Line. The cars – the first of which are scheduled to enter service in three years – would allow the railroad to lengthen rush hour trains, retire its last 36 older M2 cars, increase safety and have flexibility to increase train service in the years ahead to meet ridership increases.
The plan consists of a base order of 60 cars and an option for an additional 34 cars; the base order is expected to include the retrofitting of 10 existing M8 cars into café cars.
The additional cars will supplement the 405 M8 cars already in use on the New Haven line and New Canaan branch. Through September, the M8 cars averaged 460,277 miles between mechanical breakdowns, which the MTA said was the best rate for New Haven Line cars in decades and 53 percent above the railroad’s goal for the cars.
The M8 coach cars for use on the New Haven Line are funded 65 percent by the state and 35 percent by the MTA Capital Program. M8 Café cars are funded entirely by the state.