The long-anticipated–and long-delayed–batch of about 70 shiny new subway cars will roll into stations before the end of the year according to the MTA as reported by AM New York. The new cars will replace the system’s oldest–and most breakdown-prone–cars on the J, Z and C lines. Another 230 more are scheduled to hit the MTA rails over the course of 2018. Steve Plochochi, the MTA’s vice president of procurement and material, called the cars’ arrival “long-awaited good news,” and outlined MTA plans for a “major design change” in subway cars for future models.
The MTA will be able to fast-track the testing of these cars thanks to a second test track being built in Brighton Beach. The 300 new subway cars, known as R179, won’t look much different from the current newer models running on lines like the L, but they’re expected to help the MTA save money on upkeep of old cars frequently in need of repairs. The cars will also add numbers to the agency’s rolling stock ahead of the 2019 L train shutdown, to help boost service along nearby lines.
Next to be announced were details for a following order of 1,025 subway cars scheduled for service by 2023. These cars will be drastically different from today’s, with updated interior and exterior color schemes and new digital display screens and wider doors. Most of those cars will also be open-ended, open-gangway cars, meaning each car will be connected with accordion-like walls that enable passengers to move easily between cars. “This is a big change,” Plochochi added, “and we are excited about this future for New York subway riders.”
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