G train activists await an F gradeBy
It’s nearly time for the G train’s moment in the sun, and the line’s riders couldn’t be happier.
Last week, the MTA passed out the Rider Report Cards at the stations along the much-maligned and neglected G train, and, as The Times wrote in the City Section yesterday, G train advocates are gearing up for the line to receive an F when the grades are released next month.
The G train has long been regarded by those who rely on it as the MTA’s neglected stepchild. The train, the only non-Shuttle train never to reach Manhattan, can’t quite fulfill the promise of reaching all the way to 71st St-Continental Ave. in Queens, and service is spotty at best. During peak hours, trains — four cars instead of the MTA’s usual eight- or ten-car affairs — are supposed to show up every 7-9 minutes, and only about three or four off-peak trains run per hour. No wonder the people who love to hate the G train affectionately term it the Ghost train.
“Everybody knows what the rider report card on the G is going to be,” said Teresa Toro…
Ms. Toro, for her part, has urged riders to candidly respond to the transportation authority on her blog Save the G, which takes its name from a coalition of community advocates in Brooklyn and Queens. For each line, the agency distributes paper report cards to riders at train stations for one week, and riders have additional time to fill out identical report cards online. The deadline for the G train was Thursday; Marisa Baldeo, an M.T.A. spokeswoman, said the results would be announced in December.
But this fatalistic attitude is not without its upside. Riders are hoping that the report card results will catapult the problems of the G onto the plates of MTA officials. When the complaints come in about infrequent service, could those riders who need or want better G service be in for more frequent service and longer trains?
Maybe the tide really is turning on the G train. The service extension to Church Ave. in Kensington, once thought to be temporary, will remain in place permanently once work on the Culver Viaduct is completed. With, as The Brooklyn Paper reported last week, the population and ridership exploding along the G line, maybe its day in the sun will finally come. Who needs Manhattan anyway?
The map of the permanent G extension comes to us via The Brooklyn Paper.