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A new G spot?

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The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has promised to study whether it is feasible to connect the G train with the maze of lines at the Atlantic Avenue–Pacific Street subway station at the crossroads of Park Slope, Fort Greene, Boerum Hill and Downtown Brooklyn.

The agency promised Councilmember Letitia James (D–Fort Greene) this week that it would study what it would take — and, more important, how much it would cost — to build a tunnel that would connect the G line’s Lafayette Avenue stop with the Atlantic-Pacific station, a move that would simplify commuting for tens of thousands of people.

“It would make life better for people in Fort Greene and Clinton Hill,” James said.

The so-called “Crosstown Local” passes tantalizingly close to Atlantic Avenue, a portal for many subways and the Long Island Railroad, but skirts the hub as it travels between the Lafayette Avenue and Hoyt–Schermerhorn stations, limiting the number of ways in which Manhattan-bound G riders can transfer and continue their commutes.

Clinton Hill residents salivated over the possibility of having a free transfer to the 4/5, B/Q, N/R, M at Atlantic–Pacific, rather than contenting themselves with a transfer to the A/C at Hoyt–Schermerhorn.

“That’s a great idea,” said Amy Sly. “The lines are so close to each other.”

But burrowing a tunnel between Fulton Street and Atlantic Avenue is no simple task.

Initial estimates from the MTA say it would take 5–10 years to complete and would be the biggest shaft in the subway system, according to James.

New York City Transit would not comment before it drafts a formal response to James.

But one thing is clear: the agency is trying to improve the much-maligned G line.

New York City Transit thrilled riders in December when it announced it would increase the number of trains per hour — if (and it’s a big if) finances look good in the spring, after the agency has had a chance to assess its revenues from the recent fare increase.

It also plans to permanently extend service to Church Avenue in Kensington, creating the first direct link between Park Slope and Williamsburg.

But as the MTA giveth, it also taketh away.

The expanded service in Brooklyn comes at the expense of Queens. Currently, travelers can reach Forest Hills on nights and weekends, but if the changes go through, the G would permanently terminate in Long Island City.

Straphangers criticized the MTA, saying that it’s ignoring the line’s ridership.

“There’s a very healthy commuting community between Brooklyn and Queens,” said Teresa Toro, the chair of Community Board One’s transportation committee, and member of the Save the G Coalition.

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Reader Feedback

sarah from plg what!!! says:
Gersh,

Thanks for giving more play to my no. 1 obsession, but it's the Fulton Street stop, not the Lafayette Ave stop (that stop is on the A/C line)!

Though she did mention, as an aside, trying to connect those stops too.

Sarah R.
Feb. 22, 2008, 1:14 am
Shield from Gowanus says:
And what about extending the G one stop to 4th Avenue? Every day I watch people being forced to get off the G at Smith/9th, wait for the F, take that one stop to 4th/9th, and run like hell for their connection to the M/R.

I have never understood why the G train couldn't stay on the local track for one more stop, and then be routed onto the express track between 4th Ave and 7th Ave to turn around.
Feb. 22, 2008, 10:33 am
Mike from Boerum Hill says:
Shield - Switching the G to the express tracks between 4th Ave and 7th Ave, as logical as it is, isn't as simple as you think because of where the track crossovers are located, or so I'm told. However, if the G is extended to Church Ave as is currently planned (as mentioned in this article), which is a few stops beyond 4th Ave, then it will implicitly service 4th Ave.
Feb. 22, 2008, 3:30 pm
Andrew Porter from Bklyn Hgts says:
There is no Lafayette Avenue stop on the G. According to my subway map, Lafayette is a separate stop for the C, which doesn't connect to Atlantic-Pacific either. The nearby G stop is actually called Fulton Street.
The "tantalizing" routing described is the C's. The G is close, but as you can readily see in Peter Dougherty's excellent maps, it's not in the same trackway. Here's the general view of the whole area:

http://images.nycsubway.org/trackmap/bigbklynhts.png

and here's a close-up of the area under discussion:

http://images.nycsubway.org/trackmap/detail-atlpac.png

These maps are available in book form and are highly recommended. You can find details here:

http://nyctrackbook.com/
Feb. 23, 2008, 3:48 pm
Jenny from Carroll Gardens says:
Oh, please New York, this would be amazing. But I really want to see the elevated G run into Red Hook.
Feb. 24, 2008, 5:55 pm
PJ Jimenez from Williamsburg says:
With all the money the MTA is raking in with the MetroCards it would be very simple to bore a new hole and connect the lines to make it accessible for all of Brooklyn.
Feb. 26, 2008, 6:59 pm
Cynthia from Bed-Stuy says:
An extension to the Atlantic station would be wonderful, but they should consider adding more carts to the G train because it only has 4, and extending service permanently to 71st Ave in Queens. On the weekends it can take up to two hours to tranfer from Court Square to the E train at 23 - Ely, then to transfer to the R in Queens Plaza. It such an exhausting commute. They should also add more trains to the line, because every 10-15 minutes is ridiculous. Even during rush hour M-F the train will come at 8:20, 8:30, 8:40 Queens Bound. Smith - 9st bound trains pass twice before 1 Queens bound arrives.
April 17, 2008, 11:17 am

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