Discussion relating to the past and present operations of the NYC Subway, PATH, and Staten Island Railway (SIRT).

Moderator: GirlOnTheTrain

  by Jeff Smith
 
NYCT has indicated they will resume express service on the Culver Line in Brooklyn beginning in the fall of 2017: NY Daily News
MTA to run express F train service in Brooklyn in 2017

According to a letter to the Council from New York City Transit president Veronique Hakim, officials plan to start running some F trains express in both directions during morning and evening rush hours in the fall of 2017.

The express service will run between Jay Street-MetroTech and Church Ave., shaving minutes off long commutes of southern Brooklyn residents.

But it will stop short of the end of the line at Coney Island, and total F service will not increase — the number of trains on the line will remain the same, with some existing trains remaining local and others going express.
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In the years-long debate over restoring the service, some said an F express should only happen if more service came with it.

But the MTA shot down that idea, saying it “has concluded that the existing level of F service during rush hours is sufficient,” plus there aren’t enough subway cars available to do it.
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  by trainbrain
 
The bypassed locals stops are also the ones served by the G-Train in addition to the F-Train. Riders south of Church Avenue can only take the F. From the local stops, local F-Trains would provide a one seat ride to 6th Avenue, and one could take the G to Hoyt Schermerhorn and transfer to the A or C to get to 8th Avenue. They could also transfer to the R at Jay Street or 4th Avenue to get to the Broadway Line. Some say that the G is worthless since it doesn't go to Manhattan, but it provides a transfer opportunity that the express F would not, and when taking the G train into consideration, the new service frequencies with some F-Trains running express would be about the same as service frequencies at stations south of Church Avenue.
  by Jeff Smith
 
More details, opinions, and controversy: MTA.info

Government exception to fair-use:
F subway Express Service in Brooklyn

MTA New York City Transit has completed a feasibility study and analysis of implementing an A subway express service on the Culver line in Brooklyn and is looking forward to getting public feedback on it. This study was conducted at the request of A subway riders and elected officials in Brooklyn who use the Culver Line to commute into Downtown Brooklyn and Manhattan.

The study analyzes a two-way peak period express service between Church Av and Jay St-MetroTech, with half of the A subway trains operating express during rush hours and half of the A subway trains, along with the G subway trains, operating local. Due to ridership demand falling within NYC Transit's loading guidelines and rolling stock and track capacity constraints, no additional overall A subway service would be added, meaning that should an express be implemented, local stations between Church Av and Jay St-MetroTech would have 50% less peak A subway service.

Among the key findings of the study are the following:

*Express riders during the AM peak hour would save on average 3.4 minutes and local riders would lose on average 1.3 minutes, for a net travel time benefit of 27,000 minutes. The maximum northbound travel time savings would be 7.3 minutes. However, more riders would experience longer travel times as ridership is heavier between Church Av and Jay St-MetroTech.

*An express service could lead to some operational improvements, as southbound A subway express trains would no longer be delayed by terminating G subway trains discharging at Church Av and by G subway trains originating at Church Av.

*A subway express trains would be slightly more crowded than current A subway trains, although still within NYC Transit's loading guidelines, while the A subway locals would be less crowded. There would also be increased stair crowding at a couple of local stations due to larger PM exit surges per train.

*The report preliminarily recommends that due to the overall net passenger travel time savings and potential operational benefits, an A subway express service should be implemented after the end of the Culver station project in early Fall 2017. While there are admittedly disbenefits to A subway local riders who would face longer wait times, those riders with access to A subway express service would see reduced travel times, and this would be a net improvement in service.

MTA New York City Transit is looking forward to starting the public dialogue on this issue. If you have comments on the study, please submit them here.
  by Jeff Smith
 
The Gothamist weighs in here: Gothamist.com

Brief, fair-use:
All The MTA's Depressing Details About F Train Express, Like 50% Less Peak Service For Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens
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Opening up the Bergen Street station's lower level for F train express would cost $75 million. The MTA says, "Conceptually it would be possible to restore the lower level and allow express trains to stop there, thus mostly eliminating the negative impacts at one of the most heavily used local stations. However, restoring the lower level for use would require significant and costly reconstruction, including" making it ADA-compliant; reconstructing platform stairs; replacing all the architectural finishes; and restoring staircases, among other things.

The report claims, "This work is estimated to cost in excess of $75 million." That's a big number, but consider the cost of the mayor's planned BQX streetcar: $2.5 billion.

No more trains can be added to the rush hour service because there are no more trains and no more room. For starters, there aren't any more physical trains that the MTA can add, and the next fleet of trains will only come in future years. By then, they might be able to add one more train per hour, but that would be the maximum of 15 trains per hour. (Currently, the morning rush has 14 trains/hour and the evening rush has 12 trains/hour.)
MTA would only recommend F train express to start in Fall 2017, after the Culver stations project. So this could happen, for real.
  by SlowFreight
 
Yeah, it seems like a very half-full glass. The express tracks are there and would benefit quite a few people. But Bergen and Carroll are the two heavy lifters and both would see train service cut by adding express trains.

I've spent enough time waiting for an F or G that the thought of having half the F trains doesn't make me feel great about this plan. Wonder how many million was spent resignaling and rebuilding the express tracks so far? It just seems to me like adding express service won't help if the rolling stock isn't there to add more trains, since the trains--including the G--are always pretty crowded at rush hour anyway.

Despite the accusation of the G being "worthless," I found it was a great option when going to the airport even if I had to add the 7 to get from Court Square to Queensboro Plaza. The G is typically pretty crowded--so much so that it might actually benefit from becoming 6 cars again even if the frequency can't change. It certainly made a big difference on the Culver line to extend the G down to Church, but it's typically most crowded between Hoyt-Schermerhorn and Court Square.
  by Jeff Smith
 
Second Avenue Sagas mentions that there's also a chokepoint problem, that even if sufficient equipment were available, they still have capacity issues.
  by Jeff Smith
 
CrainsNewYork.com: New F-train express service won't end Brooklyn subway war
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Starting in September the Metropolitan Transportation Authority will run express F trains for the first time since the 1990s, when it spent tens of millions of dollars repairing the express tracks only to mothball them for decades.

Only four express trains will operate per day—two Manhattan-bound in the morning and two Brooklyn-bound during the afternoon rush. But no fewer than a dozen Brooklyn elected officials contributed euphoric quotes to the MTA's press release.
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Politicians representing districts along the southern Brooklyn portion of the F line have moaned for years that their constituents have to endure a long slog on a local train—some 26 stops from Coney Island to Broadway-Lafayette, the most of any local-only stretch in the entire subway system—while express tracks go unused.
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Express service will be limited to two Manhattan-bound trains between 7 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. and two Coney Island–bound trains between 5 p.m. and 5:40 p.m. between Church Avenue and the Jay Street-MetroTech station. "These particular times were chosen to benefit the largest number of customers while limiting impact and wait times for other Brooklyn riders," the MTA said. Local service schedules will be adjusted to maintain train spacing during the 70 minutes of weekday express service.