NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — There’s good news for subway riders in parts of Brooklyn. The “M” train is back on track after several months of construction along a critical portion of its route.
The sound of the train rolling into the Myrtle-Wyckoff station on Monday morning was a welcome rumbling to many commuters’ ears.
“It’s a long time coming,” Marlene Ventura of Ridgewood told CBS2’s Janelle Burrell.
“It’s about time. I’m very happy,” added Sylvia Caicavo of Bushwick.
More than 50,000 people ride the M train on weekdays. Many of them had been inconvenienced as work was done to replace the Myrtle viaduct.
Now, after eight months of construction, full service is back along the elevated track between the Myrtle-Wyckoff avenue and Myrtle-Broadway stations. For a lot of passengers, that means a shorter and more direct commute.
“When I go to school, I can finally just hop on the train and go all the way to Court Square,” one student said.
“I’ve been taking nothing but Ubers everywhere and that’s really expensive,” Carly Benedetto of Ridgewood said, adding, “One commute on the same train to the city without any hassle.”
The portion of track replaced was more than 100 years old. A time lapse video from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority shows the work done to completely remove the old structure and the process of installing the replacement — a $163 million project.
It features a new third rail, brand new signal equipment and cables, and new low vibration tracks.
But even with promises of a quieter ride on the first day back, the shuttle was much faster,” said Kimberly Schweitzer of Greenpoint.
Some say they were already missing the shuttle bus service that transported straphangers between the skipped stops.
“It was a little more reliable, on time, faster. Within 10 minutes. Now we’re back to waiting again, but it is the first day so we’ll see,” Schweitzer said.
“It’s still a little slow, but given the situation, the situation as it is, it should be better for us,” added Rodwell Walrond of Queens.
MTA officials said the project finished both on time and on budget. Skeptical commuters said it’s still too early to tell whether the upgraded tracks will translate into a better ride.
“We promised to modernize and stabilize the subway system, and we thank our customers for their continued patience as we take the necessary steps to do so,” MTA Chairman Joe Lhota said in a statement.
The MTA is planning a major overhaul of the “L” line next spring. Many of the riders will then rely on the M train as a work-around to get to their destinations.