G-whiz! Small train improvements on the way

G-whiz! Small train improvements on the way
Community Newspaper Group / Danielle Furfaro

The Brooklyn Local deserves a makeover, but the MTA says it doesn’t have the money to do it.

On Monday morning, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority released a report that includes a battery of changes it plans to make to appease long-suffering G train riders, but most won’t take effect until the cash-strapped agency finds the dollars needed to get the job done.

The most important improvement — a 25-percent increase in service between 3 pm and 9 pm that would help alleviate overcrowded trains — would require an additional $700,000, funding state Sen. Daniel Squadron (D–Brooklyn Heights) says he’ll help the agency obtain.

In the meantime, the MTA says it will help riders out a little bit with these improvements that will come within the next year:

• Create a more streamlined timetable that will better interact with the F line schedule, allowing G trains to be better spaced at all 20 stations.

• Pick a standardized place on the platform where the four-car train will stop every time, so riders don’t have to guess where to wait for the four-car trains.

• Rearrange benches and trash cans on the platforms so that they are in the area where trains will stop.

• Add public announcement systems to the 12 G train stations that currently do not have them.

• Make changes to the way it ushers riders into the trains at the ends of the line at Church Avenue in Kensington and Court Square in Queens.

• Add additional signage to point riders in the right directions.

Those changes were cheered by Squadron, who asked the agency for a full review of Brooklyn’s beloved Toonerville Trolley in hopes of improving service.

“Now G train riders will be en route to much-needed relief that may one day lead to the G meaning great,” said Squadron. “These recommendations will allow the G train to keep pace with skyrocketing growth in Brooklyn.”

Members of Riders Alliance, a straphangers activist group, attended the Monday meeting to show their support for the changes. The group has spent the past several months rallying and meeting with the MTA on how to improve service.

“The trains come very infrequently, which is compounded by the fact that they are irregular,” said Alexis Saba, who lives of the Clinton-Washington stop in Crown Heights. “I am happy for these changes, because it means I will not longer have to leave my house half an hour early.”

Reach reporter Danielle Furfaro at [email protected] or by calling (718) 260-2511. Follow her at twitter.com/DanielleFurfaro.