L train stop at Bedford; via Roshan Vyas on Flickr
The MTA announced on Saturday that the L train will not run between Manhattan and Brooklyn over 15 weekends. Between this coming weekend and mid-April, the L will only operate between Broadway Junction and Carnasie-Rockaway Parkway during specific weekends. As Gothamist reported, this “pre-shutdown shutdown” will prepare for the 15-month shutdown of the L-train scheduled to begin sometime in April.
More L-shutdown nightmares
Photo via The New L Train
As the doomsday clock ticks down the minutes to the dreaded L train apocalypse–the line is being shut down between 8th Avenue in Manhattan and Bedford Avenue in Brooklyn for Hurricane Sandy repairs starting in April of 2019–the powers that be have been telling us to take the bus, take the bus and take the bus or ride a bike. But Gothamist reports that a service called The New L hopes to keep us out of commuter hell by offering ultra-luxe commuter vans with professional chauffeurs at the wheel plus wi-fi, breakfast bars, and phone chargers.
And how much will it cost us?
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and the New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) have announced that Select Bus Service will be available to riders on 14th Street in Manhattan as of January 6, 2019 ahead of the planned April 2019 L train tunnel closure for repairs to due to damage from Hurricane Sandy. The M14 is expected to become the busiest bus route in the nation during the shutdown, with more than 50,000 additional daily riders expected to move above ground along 14th Street. According to NYC Transit President Andy Byford: “Launching Select Bus Service on 14th Street is a critical part of a multi-faceted service plan to keep thousands of customers moving safely and efficiently as they commute crosstown.”
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L train photo via Wiki Commons
6sqft previously reported on the city’s plans to provide alternatives to the L train during the 2019 shutdown for repairs in the Canarsie Tunnel under the East River and the reaction of community groups affected by the planned changes. A coalition of West Side neighborhood groups fearing disruptions from buses, bike lanes and other changes sued the agencies tasked with implementing the L train alternatives. Now the New York Daily News reports that according to court documents, 14th street will become a “busway” for 17 hours each day–among other strategies–to limit car traffic during the shutdown.
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The latest fear to raise its ugly head in what will admittedly be a major inconvenience–that is, the 15-month shutdown of the L line starting in April of 2019–is the very limited number of trains that will be able to pick up the slack heading across the Williamsburg bridge. The topic surfaced at last night’s Town Hall meeting, when, according to the Village Voice, a concerned citizen by the name of Sunny Ng voiced his concerns about how many more trains could fit on the bridge.
Can of worms: Open!
Photo of the L-train via Wiki Commons
If you’ve got some choice words to say about the impending L train shutdown, you’ll soon get a chance to make them public. The MTA and the New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) have announced two town hall meetings that will be held this month to discuss the Canarsie Tunnel Reconstruction project–aka the L train shutdown–with members of the community who will be affected by the April 2019 service interruption that will knock the line out of commission for 15 months. The meetings, which will be held in Manhattan and Brooklyn, are the latest in a series of public meetings and workshops intended to quell public trepidation about the impending shutdown.
When, where, what to expect
Photo via Dan Phiffer’s Flickr
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority released late last year its mitigation plan for the 15-month shutdown of the L train, set to begin in April of next year, calling for an all-bus, no-car corridor on 14th Street between Third and Ninth Avenues. The city says the MTA will have to run 70 buses every hour across the Williamsburg Bridge in order to accommodate the projected 84,000 daily bus riders. According to the New York Times, this would make 14th Street the busiest bus route in the country. In response, a coalition of Lower Manhattan neighborhood groups on Tuesday filed a federal lawsuit against the MTA and the city’s Department of Transportation in attempt to stop repairs of the L train, claiming the agencies failed to conduct an environmental review before releasing its plan.
Real estate investor, sailing champion and former Calvin Klein underwear model Parker Shinn has entered the impending void of the dreaded L train shutdown scheduled for April of 2019 with a new alternative. The concept, which joins a growing list that includes a gondola, an inflatable tunnel, car-free bus lanes, bike lanes and a lot of MTA re-routing, is called L-ternative Bridge, and consists of a temporary pontoon bridge between Brooklyn and Manhattan that would be capable of supporting two lanes of bus traffic and two walking/bike paths.
So what’s a pontoon bridge?
Photo of the L-train via Wiki Commons
The MTA unveiled on Wednesday its much-anticipated plan for the 15-month shutdown of the L train, set to begin in April of 2019. Hurricane Sandy heavily damaged the 100-year-old Carnarsie Tunnel in 2012, filling it with 7 million gallons of saltwater and forcing a total reconstruction of the tunnel. The 225,000 daily L train riders that travel from Brooklyn through the tunnel to Manhattan will be given alternative travel options, as amNY reported. The MTA’s plan calls for a new bus route that would run between Brooklyn and Manhattan, a busway on 14th Street in Manhattan with a two-way bike lane on 13th Street and increase subway service on nearby lines.
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L train via Wiki Commons
To mitigate the nightmare commuters will face during the 15-month L-train shutdown, the MTA and the Department of Transportation presented four possible alternatives that would make a portion of 14th Street a car-free busway. Streetsblog NYC reported that during a Manhattan Community Board 6 meeting on Monday, the agencies laid out the following options: a standard Select Bus Service (SBS) along 14th Street, enhanced SBS that includes turn and curb restrictions, a car-free busway in the middle lanes along 14th and a river-to-river car-free busway. Agency officials predict between 75 and 85 percent of the daily 275,000 daily L riders will use other subway lines, with bus service possibly absorbing between 5-15 percent of displaced trips.
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