The L Train Is About to Start Sucking More For a Pretty Long Time


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So it’s not like the L train hasn’t had its fair share of problems in recent months: Beyond the routine, massive degree of overcrowding on many of its platforms (ahem, Bedford Avenue death trap), the line has been fraught with issues like early morning rush hour delays, service interruptions, and even a serial groper. But now L train riders should prepare for even more hassles in the form of major repair work to address problems that were caused what seems like an incredibly long time ago by the one and only Superstorm Sandy. Happy New Year, everyone!

So, for starters, L train riders in Manhattan will be inconvenienced from on late nights and weekends January 16-February 6 due to suspended service in between Union Square and the 8th Avenue terminal stop. But, as Gothamist points out, that’s really only the beginning, and this construction “merely hints at the problems to come.” Website Second Avenue Saga points out that though Sandy caused the L’s “the Canarsie Tube [to flood] from essentially Manhattan to Brooklyn,” it never got the complete overhaul that the R train’s Montague Tube had because the L train is too vital a line for people who live along it, and has no comparable option for its users. Repairs still need to be made though, and it seems like the MTA is now prepared to do them piece by piece—which means that L train riders in Brooklyn should have many, many late nights and weekends ahead that will be spent on the M train or, even worse, on shuttle busses.

There’s no specific repair schedule set yet, so stay tuned! But if there’s any silver lining to all this, it does seem like the MTA intends to make some much needed improvements upon the L, including by adding additional staircases to the Bedford Avenue stop, so that it won’t be the complete clusterfuck that it is at any and all hours of the day, plus they’re looking to add new power substations in order to increase the number of L trains running by up to 10%, which will also be that. So, you know, if you want to be a glass half-full kind of person, think about that side of things. And you’ll have plenty of time to do that thinking while waiting for and riding the shuttle buses. Like, plenty of time.

Follow Kristin Iversen on twitter @kmiversen


  1. They should just tear us N7th street from Bedford to Driggs. No one needs to drive down that block, so just tear it up and make a nice big broad staircase down the middle.


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