Starting Friday, April 26 through the summer of 2020, L train service will be suspended on weeknights and weekends. The halt of train service is part of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s revised plan to repair the Canarsie Tunnel, proposed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo in January as an alternative to shuttering the line completely. While the L train will run normally during peak times for the next year and a half, service on the line will be reduced starting as early as 8 p.m. on weekdays. To ease the impending headache for commuters, the MTA has released a map that shows service alternatives, transfer points, and planned wait times for the L train.
L Train Shutdown
Ahead of the revised partial shutdown happening at the end of the month, the L train is shutting down. Starting Monday, April 15, the line will not run for 10 weeknights between Manhattan and Brooklyn from 10:30 p.m. to 5 a.m., Monday through Friday. The shuttered service allows the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to install signal equipment to prepare for rehabilitation work on the Canarsie Tunnel set to begin April 27, as amNY reported.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has chosen a consultant to oversee the reconstruction of the 100-year-old L train tunnel, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday. The agency tapped JMT of NY Inc. to review construction timelines and safety and environmental concerns for the never-been-done-before project. After Gov. Andrew Cuomo intervened earlier this year, the MTA revised its original Carnasie Tunnel repair plan to not require the L train to shut down for 15 months, but instead have construction work take place on nights and weekends. But the $1.2 million contract–which must be approved by the MTA board next week–does not include a review of the feasibility of the updated L train plan before construction is set to begin on April 27.
The MTA said in a press release that 100 percent of riders during high ridership hours will have full service under the revised approach to L train repairs. Also, added transit options such as more G, 7 and M service, new Williamsburg Link buses and free transfers will benefit evening and weekend riders. Starting in March, the MTA will be holding open houses with the community to discuss the plan.
Via Oran Viriyincy on Flickr
With the L train shutdown called off last month after years of preparing for its impact on commuters, many New Yorkers were left wondering what would happen to the mitigation efforts planned for both Manhattan and Brooklyn. According to amNY, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority no longer sees the need for a busway on 14th Street, which was intended to limit car traffic during the L train shutdown. While the MTA said it intends to run buses as often as every three minutes on 14th Street when L train service is reduced this spring, critics say buses will move at a sluggish pace.
Image via Flickr
Beginning on Monday, the MTA is planning a series of overnight and weekend interruptions of L train service that will give commuters a glimpse at what’s to come when Governor Cuomo’s new one-track plan to fix the Sandy-damaged Canarsie Tunnel kicks in at the end of April. From January 28 and through March 18, L trains will not run between Broadway Junction and 8 Avenue weeknights from 10:45 p.m. to 5 a.m. In addition to the weeknight closures, there will be no L-train service on seven weekends in February and March: Feb. 1-4, Feb. 8–11, Feb. 15–19, Feb. 22–25, March 1–4, March 8–11, and March 15–18.
Photo courtesy of Blue Point Brewing Company
The L train shutdown may be canceled, but don’t let Cuomo’s Superman tactics trick you into thinking you’ll get off unscathed. Even without a full 15-month shutdown, there will be a slew of headaches and, like beer company Blue Point Brewing Company says, “who knows what will happen next?!” And when in doubt, an adult beverage can help soften the blow, which is why Blue Point developed its new “What the L?” brew, complete with a very Williamsburg-esque label created by local graphic designer and subway artist Winston Tseng.
Image via Governor Cuomo’s Flickr
With Governor Cuomo’s plan to avoid a total L train shutdown for 15 months in favor of a “nights and weekends” approach confirmed earlier this month, questions still remain about just what the alternate plan will entail and how riders will be affected. According to an exclusive MTA memo draft obtained by Streetsblog and the New York Post this week, it looks like the new Canarsie Tunnel repair plan will bring its own set of headaches for straphangers, including 20-minute waits between trains on weekends and an exit-only system at First and Third Avenues on weekends.
“The total shutdown of both tunnels and all service scheduled for April 27 will not be necessary,” reads a statement from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority released Thursday. The announcement comes just a few days after the MTA held an “emergency” meeting to present the agency’s board with information about the new L train plan ahead of a vote on the project. But it appears the MTA will argue that the new plan, which would not require a total shutdown of subway service, does not need board approval to move forward after all.
Earlier this month, Gov. Andrew Cuomo shocked New Yorkers when he called off the 15-month shutdown of L-train service, part of the plan to fix the Canarsie Tunnel which had been in the works for years. Instead, the governor, along with an expert panel of engineers, presented a new, never-been-done-before plan that would require less construction in the century-old tunnel. But the New York Times reported on Tuesday that a similar plan was rejected by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority nearly five years ago over safety and feasibility concerns.