NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Madness used to get the weekend off on the New York City Subway but that no longer seems to be the case.
WCBS 880’s Monica Miller With The Story
Shatera Burke, of the Bronx, says it can take her three hours to get home from her job stocking shelves at a grocery store in Union Square.
“I take the F train, that comes like every 30-45 minutes and then the 2 train comes every 20 minutes and the 2 train takes the 1 train route, so you got to go local,” she says. “You could get to the subway at like 12 [a.m.] and probably get home at like 3 [a.m.].”
The New York Times reports that weekend ridership has doubled over the past twenty years despite the fact that service is limited due to budget cuts and maintenance work.
The trains may not always be there but the riders are and complaints of crowded, infrequent and delayed trains have been escalating.
Following the release of the Times report, State Sen. Daniel Squadron called for a review of weekend service on the F and L lines.
“Today’s report underscores the fact that weekend subway service is simply not keeping up with New York,” said Squadron.
In a letter to New York City Transit President John Prendergast, Squadron requested a full review of the L line’s performance. Squadron wrote a similar letter in 2009 which prompted the MTA to review weekday service on the F train.
Squadron told 1010 WINS, ridership along the L line has increased drastically because of new development projects in Williamsburg and Greenpoint that have brought residents and travelers.
“These neighborhoods are only getting more popular, more people moving in, more reasons to visit them,” Squadron said. “The MTA should be ahead of the curve on assaulting this change in ridership instead of falling further behind.”
Kevin Ray says the extra travel time makes for a much longer day, especially on the overnight shift.
“The train, you really have no excuse. You know, you can’t get a paper from the train guy and tell him you’re late for work,” he tells WCBS 880 reporter Monica Miller. “You don’t really know what’s gonna happen when you jump on the train. You’re always wondering what’s gonna happen.”
Transit officials say weekends are the best time to work on maintenance to keep the century-old system running.