It is throwing riders a line.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority will add more trains to the L, M, and 2 lines starting in December, amidst surging ridership numbers. Straphangers say the news offers some light at the end of the tunnel, especially during the current round of weekend and overnight L train closures.
“It is clear that ridership statistics are at an all-time high, and the MTA needs to step up and add more trains so that people can get on trains when they need to and are not waiting on crowded platforms,” said Nick Sifuentes, deputy director of transit advocacy group Riders Alliance. “We need all of this that we can get and they need the capital funding to do it.”
The authority will add seven more weekday round-trip services on the L line between 10:30 am and 2 pm. The additions will reduce the average wait time to five minutes during the periods between morning and evening rush hours, according to the agency. Weekday ridership on the L train grew by 4.7 percent — more than 5,600 riders — last year, according to agency figures.
The M line will add one more train between 9 am and 9:30 am on weekdays, which should reduce the wait time to seven and a half minutes, while the 2 line will add two more weeknight trips between 8:30 pm and 9:30 pm.
In other L train news, the authority has agreed to once again offer a free transfer between the G train at Broadway and the J or M trains at Lorimer in Williamsburg — but only while the L train is out of commission overnights and on weekends until May 18. The free transfer will start tonight.
Rider groups and pols have long asked the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to make that transfer permanently free, but the authority is still refusing to consider it, spokesman Kevin Ortiz confirmed today. Sifuentes said the agency has no excuse not to slash the $2.75 surcharge for good.
“They should be looking at everything they can do to make travel more convenient for riders in Brooklyn,” said Sifuentes. “They do not need to wait for capital funding to add a free transfer.”