Friendly R-eminder — MTA to cut train service to Manhattan Aug. 2

Turn that thumb around: Brooklyn R train riders will lose their one-seat commute into the city.

Starting on Aug. 2, the Metropolitan Transit Authority will cut off R train service between Bay Ridge for more than a year to repair damages from Hurricane Sandy.

The MTA announced in June that the Montague Street tunnel — which connects the R line from Brooklyn to Manhattan — is in such bad shape from the storm that it will shut down for 14 months for repairs. The agency said that Sandy’s salt surge corroded the electronics in the tunnel. The two months the tunnel was closed immediately following the storm was not enough to fix all the damage.

“Even after we restored service through the tubes again, signal and other component failures rose dramatically,” said chairman Thomas Prendergast.

During the closure period, commuter trains will terminate at Court Street, where riders heading to downtown Manhattan can switch for free to the 4 or 5 train. On weekends, the R train will run over the Manhattan Bridge into Manhattan, following the N line’s path into Manhattan.

The R is the only train that services Bay Ridge, and Councilman Vincent Gentile (D-Bay Ridge) and state Sen. Marty Golden (R-Bay Ridge) have both called for ferry service between the Brooklyn Army Terminal and the Battery to compensate for the loss. But so far, the MTA has refused to consider the idea.

Reach reporter Will Bredderman at wbredderman@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4507. Follow him at twitter.com/WillBredderman.

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