Brace yourselves — MTA plans at least 59 more nights of subway closures this year under its new FasTrack program. In total, that adds up to 413 hours of limited service on certain subway lines. Every month this year (except August and December) will see at least one major line shut down for repairs overnight during the work week.
Carmen Bianco, the MTA’s senior vice president of subways, told the NY Daily News:
“We know it’s an inconvenience to our customers and we apologize for the inconvenience. Hopefully, our customers will only have to walk a block, or two blocks at the most, to get alternate service.”
The new FasTrack program is designed to allow MTA workers to finish necessary repairs quicker. In order for this to happen, major subway lines are completely shut down for four consecutive nights, an event previously unheard of in a city with 24-hour public transit service.
Some transit advocacy groups say that since FasTrack was originally billed as a temporary pilot program, MTA should re-evaluate its cost-effectiveness before going through with more subway closings.
But allow this blogger to relay a story about London, where she lived for a brief period. That city’s subway system was virtually unusable every single weekend due to construction work — and the train operators were allowed to strike on weekdays! Seriously, we’ve got it good over here, New York. Just plan ahead: this week, the Seventh Avenue subway line will be closed nightly from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. until this Friday.