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.
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.
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.
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.
Photo of the L-train via Wikimedia
As part of its NYC Subway Action Plan aimed at enhancing the straphanger experience, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) will install a floor-to-ceiling screen at the L-train’s Third Avenue station to prevent people from jumping or being pushed onto the tracks. As a pilot program, the new screen doors will be put into place in 2019 during the train’s shutdown and are expected to be ready in 2020 when the L-train resumes service. As the New York Post reported, the authority is still working on a design that could work in different sized-stations in the future.
G Train at Court Square via Wikipedia
In response to the looming 15th-month L train shutdown, which will affect its nearly 225,000 daily riders beginning April 2019, real estate developers have started looking at Williamsburg’s hip and slightly cheaper neighbors, Greenpoint and South Williamsburg. Both areas sit nearby the G, J, M and Z trains, and in the past have offered a variety of housing options at cheaper prices. According to the New York Times, as developers begin their plunge into Greenpoint, sites along these train lines have become pricier and more difficult to lock down.
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It’s official. The Metropolitan Transit Authority board voted to approve a 15-month shutdown of the L train on Monday, instead of the originally proposed 18 months. The Board also awarded a $477 million contract to Judlau Contracting and TC Electric, who will responsible for repairing the train’s Canarsie Tunnel, which suffered severe flooding damage after Hurricane Sandy (h/t WSJ). The planned shutdown is set to begin in April 2019 and cuts all L train service between Bedford Avenue in Williamsburg and Eighth Avenue in Manhattan.
Finally, there’s some good news for the nearly 225,000 daily L train riders commuting to Manhattan. This weekend the Metropolitan Transit Authority announced that the Canarsie tube, which carries the L train between Manhattan and Brooklyn, will be closed for 15 months instead of 18, three months ahead of schedule. As reported by the Daily News, the MTA plans to begin rehabilitating the tunnel in April of 2019.
A month ago, U.S. Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, City Councilman Stephen Levin, and State Assemblyman Joseph Lentol drafted a letter to the Mayor, urging him to advocate for the East River Skyway as a solution for the impending L train shutdown. Building on this momentum, a digital petition addressed to de Blasio has launched on Change.org where the public can show their support for the plan, as well.
It looks like the East River Skyway is getting a big boost from local elected officials. Three politicians have jumped on the idea, including U.S. Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, City Councilman Stephen Levin, and State Assemblyman Joseph Lentol. The trio together drafted a letter to Mayor de Blasio, encouraging him to back the transit initiative as a solution to impending L train closure. “This is the coolest thing we could do for the neighborhood,” Lentol, told DNA Info. “I don’t want to denigrate the BQX but this is even a greater plan to have a gondola going from Brooklyn to Manhattan forever.”