Riders on some of the city's busiest subway lines might be getting a bit of relief in the form of more trains, but not until June 2016.
The MTA is spending $5.8 million to add 34 more round-trips on 12 lines in the city. The additional service will be added on the 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, A, E, J, M, N and S trains is an effort to address the surge in ridership, which rose to an average of 5.6 million daily riders in 2014 and is expected to be higher in 2015.
The increase is in the 2016 budget, the MTA said.
The most significant increase in service will be the 42nd Street Shuttle during the evening, doubling the number of trains to 24 from between 9:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. for a five-minute wait time, the MTA said.
The MTA’s busiest line, the 4, 5 and 6 trains, will get seven additional evening round-trip trains.
An additional three C train round trips are planned for Sundays. The 1 and 2 lines will get a total of five more peak and evening hour trips; the A, C and E trains will see three additional midday and evening trains, and three additional Sunday morning trips.
“Our subway system is more than a century old and even where we are aided by new technology, we are still limited by the overall age and condition of the system and the maintenance that is needed to run trains safely. Making these service changes wherever we can lets us make the best use of existing resources as we expand to keep up with private sector development,” said James L. Ferrara, Interim President of NYC Transit.
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Gene Russianoff, senior attorney of the Straphangers Campaign told Metro the increase in round-trips is “triage” dictated by MTA rules to provide additional service based on the agency's loading and policy guidelines.
“They’re mandating their own rules and regulations,” Russianoff said. “It’s not really major, no one will really notice them, a five minute reduction. I wish it were enough.”