May 21, 2018 By Tara Law
The MTA announced today that it will expand A, D, E and F train service on weekdays and add buses to several Queens lines on weekends.
NYC Transit President Andy Byford said Monday that the MTA will add trains beginning in November to reduce subway crowding and wait times. The MTA will also expand weekend bus service on the Q6, Q8, Q29, Q47, Q49, Q101 and Q65 starting in July.
The announcement comes at a time when the MTA is being heavily criticized for overcrowded subways, unreliable service and irresponsible financial practices. The New York Times reported in March that the subway system hit an all-time performance low in January, with just 58.1 percent of all weekday trains arriving on time that month.
The A, D, E and F were among the 10 worst offenders, with fewer than half of the trains arriving on time, The New York Times reported. The F train was the least reliable train citywide in January, with only 32.2 percent of trains arriving on time.
Byford said that the service increases were a first step toward improved subway performance. The MTA will announce a comprehensive plan to “modernize and improve” the transit system on Wednesday, Byford said in a statement.
“We’re thrilled to add some additional service for subway and bus riders, and much bigger improvements are on the horizon,” Byford said.
The E train, which cuts through Long Island City, Jackson Heights, Forest Hills and Jamaica, will have three additional Manhattan-bound trains from 10:30 a.m. until noon.
The F train, which runs beside the E line but terminates in Jamaica Hills, will have an additional Queens-bound train between 10:30 a.m. and 11 a.m., and additional Manhattan-bound trains between 10:30 a.m. and 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m., and 8 p.m. and 10 p.m.
The MTA simultaneously announced changes to the borough’s bus lines on weekends. The MTA frequently reviews bus schedules to reflect rider demand and travel conditions such as traffic, the authority said in a statement.
The Q29, which runs from Jackson Heights/82 St. to Glendale Myrtle Ave., will have increased afternoon service on weekends.
The Q47, which runs from Glendale Atlas Park Mall to Marine Air Terminal at Laguardia Airport, will have additional service throughout the day on Saturdays and Sundays.
The Q49, which starts at Jackson Heights/74 St., cuts through Astoria, and runs to 31 Ave./102 St. in East Elmhurst, will have increased weekend service.
The Q101, which starts at 2 Ave. and E 60 St. in Manhattan, runs down Steinway St., and ends at 19 Ave./49 St. in Ditmars Steinway, will have increased weekend service at midday and in the afternoon.
The MTA also announced that it will reduce Saturday Q29 bus service, which runs from 82 St./Roosevelt Ave. in Elmhurst to 81 St./Myrtle Ave. and Glendale due to “light ridership.”
Extra E and F trains after rush hour? What does that accomplish? The overcrowding and delays are during rush hour when people are riding the most. They need to actually fix the problems that affect rush hour delays and overcrowding, not add useless trains during off peak times.
It’s good to see that someone is paying attention to this issue but these train measures are putting a Band-Aid on an amputation. An average of one additional train every 30 minutes during a select 90 minutes for a line that has 32% on time performance is not going to make a significant difference. It’s better than nothing, or losing trains but these lines need real help!