nyc subway

Bushwick, Greenpoint, real estate trends, Transportation, Williamsburg

G train, NYC subway

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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Policy, Transportation

nyc subway, mta, cuomo

While just a few days ago Governor Cuomo announced his “aggressive” action plan to combat the chronic problems of the city’s subway service, the MTA’s new version of its capital plan released Wednesday shows barely any increase in spending for system improvements. As the New York Times reported, the agency increased its current five-year capital plan from $29.5 billion to $32.5 billion, adding $1.6 billion in debt. However, instead of allocating funds for subway service improvements, spending instead will go towards projects seen as priorities for Cuomo, like electronic tolling at bridges and the next phase of the Second Avenue Subway.

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Midtown West, Policy, Transportation

W train, mta service changes, second avenue subway, q train

Seeking innovative solutions to fix the mess that is the New York City transit system, Governor Cuomo on Tuesday launched a competition called the “MTA Genius Transit Challenge.” Just one of the governor’s recently proposed ideas to fix the subway, the international competition challenges participants to develop ideas for better signaling, new car designs, and WiFi throughout the system, including in tunnels. The winner of each category will receive $1 million and a possible contract deal with the state. In addition to the challenge, Cuomo announced he has created a Penn Station Task Force to devise alternative transportation solutions during Amtrak’s track work at the station this summer.
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maps, Transportation

The NYC subway map tidily lays out over 665 miles of track and 472 stations into a simple, easy-to-read design. While the map gives the impression that our fair city’s transit system is orderly and evenly spaced, as any true straphanger will tell you, that’s not the reality. Indeed, those colorful lines and nodes have been placed for maximum legibility, simply showing geographical approximations that often don’t even kind of match up with real life (as this man will tell you). Now, one redditor brings us an entrancing new animation that removes the MTA’s distortion, giving us a look at the real distance that exists between stations and lines.

mor here

Transportation, Upper East Side

Just a month after opening on the first of the year, the Second Avenue Subway had eased congestion on the Lexington line by 11 percent. Now, nearly five months in, that figure has more than doubled, with ridership on the 4/5/6 decreased by 26 percent and a whopping 40 percent during peak morning hours. Moreover, Second Avenue’s average weekday ridership is up from 140,000 to 176,000 passengers, an increase which has prompted the MTA to add two additional train trips during rush hour come this November.

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Transportation

Regional Plan Association Lab, NYC subway, Building Big for Less

As the nation’s largest transit system, the New York City subway helps connect millions of people to its five far-reaching boroughs each day. While it has helped shaped the city’s indisputable wealth, density and culture, the cost of subway construction remains incredibly expensive, with the time of projects taking much longer than they should. According to a study, “Building Big for Less,” by the Regional Plan Association Lab (RPA), with the exception of a few minor projects, New York’s subway system peak performance was in 1937. Since the 1930s, there has been little increase in system capacity and today there are fewer miles of track and commuter rail than in 1937. RPA’s study focused on NYC and other world capitals in order to compare transit data on a large scale.

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Policy, Transportation

14th Street, NYC subway commute

After a week full of delays and malfunctions, the MTA has announced a six-point plan to address the subway’s chronic service problems. The agency’s plan will increase testing of tracks and signals, place more emergency personnel and police officers in stations and add more cars into service at a faster rate. The first phase of the MTA’s plan focuses on the A, C and E lines from 125th Street to Fulton Street in Manhattan, and at the 149th Street-Grand Concourse and 3rd Avenue-138th Street in the Bronx. Bottlenecks frequently occur at these sites, which cause delays that spread throughout the entire system.

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History, Transportation

In order to collect fares from various stations, the MTA created a special armored train that moved all the subway and bus fares collected to a secret room at 370 Jay Street in Downtown Brooklyn. As Untapped Cities learned, the money trains, which ran from 1951 to 2006, had 12 collecting agents and one supervisor, all of whom were armed and wearing body armor. After the Metrocard arrived, the revenue collection system changed, and the final armored train rode in January 2006 on the same day the Money Room closed.

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Policy, Transportation

The reason behind the incessant breakdown of the subway’s escalators and elevators? Nearly 80 percent of them do not receive the necessary maintenance by the MTA. After an 18-month audit, City Comptroller Scott Stringer’s office found that in a random sample of 65 out of the city’s 407 total escalators and elevators, about 50 had not undergone any preventative maintenance service. As reported by the Wall Street Journal, only 20 percent of machines sampled by the comptroller’s office received the scheduled maintenance on time. Find out more

Transportation

nyc subway, bombardier, r179

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.

What about those future models

History, Transportation

Peter Samson, standing in the center, and his teammates during the failed 1966 run. From the New York Herald-Tribune, via the Queens Borough Public Library

In May of 1940, electric railroad enthusiast Herman Rinke became the first person to tour the entire New York City subway system on a single token, putting in 25 some hours underground all for fun. After reading about Rinke’s journey, Peter Samson, a computer software engineer who later invented the world’s first video game Spacewar, decided to take a stab at making his own record. As the Times recounts, he formed the Amateur New York Subway Riding Committee (ANYSRC) to develop rules for the challenge. After one failed attempt in 1966, Samson, with the help of 15 volunteers and a computer program that tracked the fastest route, completed the trip in 25 hours, 50 minutes and 30 seconds on April 21, 1967. Since then, the subway challenge has taken off for puzzle and transit lovers worldwide.

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City Living, Transportation, Union Square, Urban Design

Advocacy group Transportation Alternatives has been trying to stay focused on grounded solutions–literally, as opposed to the tunnel and skyway ideas that are also being discussed–to mitigate the anticipated possible chaos when the dreaded 15-month L train shutdown hits. The organization is aiming for the ear of the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the MTA which control street design and bus expansion, respectively. The group recently held an “L-ternative” contest seeking pedestrian-centered proposals for main transit corridors along the L line, such as 14th street, Gothamist reports. The winning proposal, called 14TH ST.OPS, imagines a (car) traffic-free 14th Street with a six-stop shuttle bus using dedicated lanes, plus protected bike lanes.

Check out the winning post-L-Train vision

Policy, Transportation

MetroCard, NYC subway, MTA

Although the recent subway and bus fare hike affects all New Yorkers, low-income residents are being especially hard hit by the jump in cost. As a way to ease this financial burden, the City Council has proposed a $50 million pilot program as part of the “Fair Fares” initiative which will provide half-fare MetroCards to New Yorkers living at or below the federal poverty line. As the Daily News learned, transit advocates say nearly 800,000 residents would be eligible for the discount under the full plan.

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Design, infographic, Transportation

Like New York, Boston’s subway system is organized with a different color for each route. Unlike NYC, however, there’s no corresponding numbers, so the lines along the T are actually referred to by their respective hues. Which is why Boston resident Ari Ofsevit, a transportation engineering and urban planning graduate student at MIT, found it odd that the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority didn’t use the same colors on their Twitter alerts as were found on their maps and signs. As Next City reported, this inspired him to create a graphic comparing the various colors of 13 major transit lines across the U.S. and Canada.

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City Living, Transportation

L train, L train shutdown, MTA

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.

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