Blue Point creates 'What the L?' beer for your NYC train shutdown woes
Gov. Andrew Cuomo's new plan, after canceling the L train shutdown, could lead to 40 minute waits for trains. You'd deserve a drink after that commute.
If following all the news of the changing L train shutdown plans makes you want to drink, New York brewery Blue Point has just the thing: A What the L? lager.
Blue Point, a Long Island-based brewery, created the What the L? Beer to encapsulate all your L train woes.
“Blue Point brewery understands the confusion New Yorkers have been faced with over these past few weeks in regard to the L train construction plans,” the brewery said in a press release. “We may have avoided a full 15-month shutdown... for now… but who knows what will happen next! To show New Yorker’s we’ve got their backs during these trying transportation times, Blue Point is joining in and saying ‘What the L?’ the best way we know how… with a beer of course!”
What the L? Is a helles style lager with a 5.2 percent ABV. It’s expected to be available for purchase around New York City by April, “shutdown or no shutdown,” per Blue Point.
"The idea for What the L? came to be when the shutdown was initially announced," Blue Point President Jenna Lally said in an email. "We have quite a few employees that live in Brooklyn who will be affected by the construction, including myself — so we wanted to show New Yorkers we had their backs by bringing some light to the situation. With the latest news and confusion, it only reinforces that we need a cold one to get through these week-by-week changes together."
The beer features label art created by local New York artist Winston Tseng, a graphic artist and art director known for skateboard company Enjoi and those fake anti-MAGA posters you may have seen tacked onto the sides of New York City trash cans, which read “Keep NYC Trash Free” along with an x-ed out image of man glad in a MAGA hat.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that the L train shutdown wasn’t necessary in the beginning of January, but the MTA didn’t follow up with any official comment until about two weeks later, leaving many straphangers both confused and concerned about their transportation future.
Work on the L train shutdown was set to begin April 27. By mid-January, the MTA officially said that construction will not begin on that date and that a “total shutdown of both tunnels and all service” will not be necessary.
What had been a complete shutdown planned for 15 months to rehabilitate the Canarsie Tunnel, which was damaged during Superstorm Sandy, will now be a 15 to 20 month project with one tube of the tunnel shutdown at a time and service disruptions on nights and weekends.
Both Cuomo and MTA officials said this change would be a huge relief to the 250,000 L train riders by saving them from 15 months of total travel inconvenience.
But now, it’s pretty clear that straphangers’ commutes will still be seriously disrupted.
A leaked draft memo obtained by Streetsblog this week revealed that Cuomo’s new L train plan could lead to 20 minute gaps between trains, an increase from the current 4 minute wait on weekends, along with plenty of other pains.
During overnight service, along with those 20-minute train headways, there will be no additional L shuttle service, no increase in G service, no new buses along 14th Street between the boroughs or in Brooklyn and potentially restricted access to L train platforms if the monitoring of those station crowds reveals a danger, Streetsblog reported.
Actual wait times to board an L train could stretch to “40 minutes or more,” Gothamist reported based on that draft document.
“In practice,” per the document, “by drawing customers to L stations, only for them to find that for all practical purposes the L will not be available to them, net travel time impacts could be worse with one-track closure than with two-track closure.”