NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — For many of the Islanders’ longtime fans on Long Island, it was hard enough to see the team leave Nassau Coliseum for Brooklyn.
But it was even harder getting to Brooklyn.
In response to complaints from fans during the Islanders’ inaugural season at the Barclays Center, the Long Island Rail Road will run twice as many trains to and from games compared to the start of last season, the LIRR announced Thursday.
The increased service, which is over and beyond the railroad’s regularly scheduled trains, includes a fourth post-game train bound for Ronkonkoma. The number of trains match what LIRR was running during the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season.
“More and more Islanders fans have found the LIRR to be the quickest and most convenient way to and from Barclays Center,” LIRR President Patrick A. Nowakowski said in a news release. “We anticipate continued growth in ridership to Brooklyn as the Islanders begin their second season there. We’re providing an unprecedented level of service to accommodate that growth this season, and future system improvements like the proposed Main Line third track will give us capacity to provide even more.”
Last season, about 40 percent of Islanders fans took the LIRR to Atlantic Terminal, just across the street from Barclays. Fans, however, cited overcrowding on trains as a nuisance. Suffolk County fans, specifically, cited a longer-than-necessary experience on the rails.
“We are delighted to have worked with the LIRR to deliver expanded service for Islanders fans this season, similar to the enhanced train schedule provided for the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season,” said Brett Yormark, CEO of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment, which oversees Barclays Center and the business operations of the Islanders. “Our goal is to continue making Islanders games even more convenient for Long Island fans.”