screen shot of MTA Service Change web page taken this morning at 8 am.
In the past few days, a "service change" notice has appeared (and disappeared) several times on the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's web site concerning F train service at all three of our local Brooklyn stations. According to the announcement, some Manhattan-bound trains will skip the Smith-9th Street, Carroll Street and Bergen Street stations during morning rush hour and afternoon hours from Monday to Friday till January 27th.
Reader Kim made us aware of the notice a few days ago and called the service change the "latest F train shenanigans." She also concluded that this:
"is most definitely NOT due to actual planned work.
1) it is during rush hour when trains are running,
2) the G would be running on the same line making stops on those same stations, so the excuse that it's "planned work" makes no sense. Is this the MTA's 1st plot to sneak in the local cuts in the new year? One has to wonder.
I am not looking forward to the ridiculous and unsafe number of people on the platform in the coming days. "
You may remember that the MTA announced last year that it was proposing the implementation of express F train service between the Jay Street-MetroTech and Church Avenue stations (with a stop at 7th Avenue Park Slope), with half of all F trains running express each way during peak morning and evening rush hours. No new trains would be added to the line.
The express service is slated to be fully implemented in the fall of 2017. During a few weeks this past summer, the MTA already tested the changes.
The plan was met with much skepticism from Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Boerum Hill, Red Hook and Gowanus residents, who feared that a 50% reduction in service during rush hour at their local stations would lead to severe and dangerous crowding on the platforms.
A "Don't Cut Local F" petition was circulated by a group opposing the change. This past September, the group met with City Councilman Brad Lander, State Senator Daniel Squadron, and Assemblywoman Jo Anne Simon, who pledged to fight the cuts.
Since Kim sent us the latest F train service change information and the link to the MTA web page two days ago, the notice has been taken down and put back up several times. It was back up this morning at 8 am, so we were able to take the screen shot above.
What the MTA is up to. Either this is a legitimate service change due to "planned work" or its not. If it is, why does the announcement keep on disappearing? Why is the G train able to use the tracks that it shares with the F train at these stations?
More likely, it is just MTA's way of getting us used to the express F train and the skipping of our stations during rush hour.
Have you noticed any F train service changes in the past few days? If so, how did this affect you?
To read the MTA Feasibility study for the F rain express service, click here.
I sent the information and a link to this post to State Senator Squadron's office, since he has been very vocal about the F Train express issue in the past. This afternoon, I received a response from Andrea Bender, who works for Squadron.
Yes -- we are aware of the issues. We've had high level conversation with the MTA about this. They told us they are working on a signal near Bergen Street causing seven Manhattan-bound trains in both the AM/PM rush to run express between Church St. and Jay Street. We are monitoring the impact on the local stations closely. We're asking people to share photos and their experiences with Don't Cut Local F.
Photo of the F/G train platform at the Carroll Street Station
Taken January 9th by Lesley Grossman