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G train riders brace for five-week shutdown

G train service will be suspended between Brooklyn and Queens between Friday, July 25, and Tuesday, Sept. 2.

g train shutdown greenpoint avenue G train service will be suspended between Brooklyn and Queens for five weeks starting on Friday.
Credit: Bess Adler/Metro

Three G train stations in Brooklyn and Queens will temporarily close on Friday, creating a unique predicament for Julia Guez.

New to Greenpoint, Guez only found out a few days ago that she will likely give birth during the five-week G train service suspension.

"I'm definitely giving birth in the shutdown window," Guez said. "I definitely won't be taking the shuttle to get to the hospital.I will take an Uber."

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Clickhereto read how to get around during the G train shutdown

With or without using free shuttle buses the MTA will offer to displaced straphangers,Guez is just one of thousands of G train riders who need to make other transportation plans this summer. Every day, some 30,000 people swipe in at the affected stations -- Brooklyn's Greenpoint Avenue station and the 21st Street and Court Square stops in Long Island City.

Come 10:30 p.m. Friday, those subway stations will be closed as part of ongoing repair and recovery work on the Greenpoint Tube, which experienced extensive damage during Superstorm Sandy when the tunnel was flooded with 3 million gallons of salt water. Service is expected to resume Sept. 2 at 5 a.m.

g train greenpoint tube repairs The G train service shutdown is necessary after flood damage to the Greenpoint Tube during Superstorm Sandy, according to the MTA. Here, workers clear debris from the Greenpoint Tube in August 2013.
Credit: Marc A. Hermann / MTA New York City Transit

With less riders in the summer, the MTA chose to complete the repairs now so as to mitigate its effect. The work isn't suited to weekend closures and requires 24/7 access to the tunnel, according to the MTA.

Though Councilman Stephen Levin said the work was "necessary," he worried about G train riders.

"It's a very serious undertaking and it's going to have a serious impact not only on my constituents but also my own neighborhood," said Levin, who lives near the Greenpoint Avenue stop.

The G train is one of only a few direct subway connections between Brookyln and Queens. Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, who represents Long Island City, worries the about the shutdown's effect on local businesses who might rely on customers from Brooklyn.

"It creates a bottleneck and really walls off communities from each other," he said.

Levin and Van Bramer are also concerned about overcrowding on the free shuttles.

"We've certainly gotten complaints from constituents," Van Bramer said.

Jack Curley experienced the shuttles during 12 weekend shutdowns on the G train last year.

"You had to take the shuttle and it was always completely packed," Curley said.

Rebecca Bailin, a community organizer with the Riders Alliance, was more optimistic about the shuttle service.

"The MTA really has to make these improvements to the tube," said Bailin, herself a G train rider. "On some level we have to be patient."

Bess Adler contributed reporting.Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter @AnnaESanders

 
 
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