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Queens Chronicle

MTA to review G train for service upgrades

Riders, officials laud transit agency

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Posted: Thursday, February 28, 2013 10:30 am | Updated: 10:50 am, Thu Mar 7, 2013.

The G train has only two stops in Queens. But riders and public officials from this borough and Brooklyn are applauding the decision of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to conduct a full line review with the aim of improving service.

“The G train is much maligned, but it is vital for people who want to travel between western Queens and Brooklyn,” said John Raskin, executive director of the Riders Alliance, a grassroots bus and subway advocacy group. He said while the MTA is greatly underfunded, the idea here is to help the agency make changes to improve the service that is available.

MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz said the agency hopes to have its assessments completed by the end of June.

The MTA’s action follows on the heels of a letter written in January by Democratic state Sens. Daniel Squadron (D-Manhattan) and Martin Malave Dilan (D-Brooklyn) to NYC Transit President Thomas Prendergast. Squadron in recent years has been successful in getting the MTA to perform similar reviews on the F and L lines.

“This would make Squadron three for three,” said Gene Russianoff, spokesman for the Straphangers Campaign. “Both of those reviews resulted in better service and an improved experience for riders.”

The G train runs between Church Avenue in Brooklyn and Court Square in Long Island City. The only other stop in the borough is at 21st Street.

In their letter to the MTA, dated Jan. 27, Squadron and Dilan said ridership on the G line has increased “in parallel with residential growth throughout Queens and Brooklyn.” Both men wrote that their constituents are increasingly concerned about infrequent trains, overcrowding and delays.

Jordan Hare, a member of the Riders Alliance and a resident of Sunnyside, said the study is welcome news for Western Queens.

“If you want to go to Brooklyn, you don’t want to have to go to Manhattan to do it,” he said. He would like to have better announcements, electronic signage and longer trains.

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