New York

Report: Most Subway Stops More Crowded Since ’98, Some Ridiculously So


Photo (cc) Runs With Scissors.

The Center for an Urban Future‘s latest New York by the Numbers proves with MTA data what you’ve probably suspected: most subway stations are more crowded than ever — especially in the boroughs. A quarter of New York’s subway stations saw average weekday ridership increases of 50 percent or more in the past decade. And 20 of the 22 stations with the largest percentage increase were either in Brooklyn or Queens, or north of 96th Street — though the champ is the Lexington Av-63 Street F stop, whose ridership has ballooned 777 percent to a daily mob of 13,488 between 1998 and 2008.

Brooklyn’s fastest-growing platform is the Park Place stop on the Franklin Avenue Shuttle, with 530 percent growth; Queens’ is 21 St-Queensbridge (F) at 253 percent, and the Bronx’s is Bronx Park East (2,5), the population of which almost doubled.

The L line had the most stations (13) among the top 50, with its Atlantic Avenue, Morgan Avenue, and New Lots Avenue stations in the top 20 (Bedford has to settle for #22 and a 111 percent increase).

Outside the closed Cortlandt Street stations, only eight subway stops saw declines in ridership: In Manhattan, Chambers St-WTC/Park Pl (A,C,E,2,3); in Brooklyn, Neptune Av (F), 55 St (D,M), and Lawrence St. (M,R); and in Queens, Jamaica-Van Wyck (E), Howard Beach-JFK Airport (A), Rockaway Park-Beach 116 St (A,S), and Queens Plaza (E,R,V,G), the biggest decliner at 23.2 percent. No Bronx stops lost ridership.

The Center looked at bus ridership, too: Manhattan’s has actually dropped in the past five years, leaving it with a mere 7.6 percent net increase since 1998. Ridership growth also slowed between 2003 and 2008 in the boroughs, but jumped so much in prior years that the numbers for the decade are still up substantially in Queens (28.4 percent), Staten Island (28.4), the Bronx (23.5) and Brooklyn (21.9).


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