Home Asides MTA announces short-term 7 line repairs

MTA announces short-term 7 line repairs

by Benjamin Kabak

For the past few months, commuters and politicians along the IRT Flushing line have grown even more impatient with the MTA than they usually are. At various points this winter and spring, the 7 line has faced numerous unplanned delays due to its aging signal infrastructure and flood-prone tunnels. To speed up repairs, the MTA will institute a series of weekend outages, Transit announced today.

This weekend and again for a weekend in June and one in July, there will be no 7 service between Queensboro Plaza and Times Square so that crews can work in the Steinway Tunnels. The work, says Transit, includes signal circuit repair, removal of silt and muck from the roadbed, power system improvements in the area and grouting of tunnel walls to address water intrusion. This work will provide some short-term relief as the longer-term installation of a new signaling system is ongoing.

β€œThe recent deterioration in service illustrates clearly why this work is so vital and why we must perform it at this time, and I have to be frank, performing this vital work will require major planned service disruptions for some time to come,” NYC Transit President Thomas F. Prendergast said. β€œWe are committed to improving service along the Flushing Line and we will keep everyone informed of service changes and how the work is progressing.” As of now, there is still no word on the Court Square entrance, another long-term problem plaguing part of the 7 line.

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Bolwerk May 18, 2011 - 4:12 pm

Re-open the Queensborough Bridge to rail traffic! πŸ˜‰

Jason May 19, 2011 - 11:12 am


Eric May 18, 2011 - 4:41 pm

Can the MTA afford a giant sheet to cover the Court Sq transfer? Every time I make the transfer between the 7 and the G I feel like I’m being taunted.

Al D May 18, 2011 - 5:15 pm

The non-completion of the transfer is befuddling. It appears to be complete and yet is not open!

Jerrold May 18, 2011 - 7:19 pm


I don’t understand WHAT IS causing the continuing non-opening of the Court Sq. transfer.
Is Citigroup “holding it hostage” to force some additional concessions out of the MTA, or what?

Brian May 18, 2011 - 5:38 pm

Same here Eric. But if you guys analyze this closely, and the statement on the MTA’s website, it demonstrates the need for adequate funding for the MTA. As Ben stated earlier, if the MTA doesn’t have the money just to keep the system in good condition, then the state of the infrastructure goes down, and then MTA is forced to suspend service to make these short term repairs, that sooner or later will break down again. There is a section from an MTA statement about the service changes for the 7 line that was released earlier today that emphasizes my point-

…The two major subway maintenance projects taking place this weekend – one in Queens and one in Brooklyn — will affect thousands of subway customers but also highlight the ongoing need for infrastructure improvements to an aging system that never rests…

AlexB May 18, 2011 - 5:47 pm

I thought the MTA has been upgrading the signaling system for years now, the way they did with the L train. Is that not the case or are they just moving more slowly?

Brian May 18, 2011 - 6:21 pm

They have been doing some track and signal work on the 7 line for quite some time, but the work to install CBTC has begun to intensify. It’s funded, and most of the work has been concentrated around Mets-Willets Point and 111 Street, where the approach to Corona Yard is located.

AlexB May 19, 2011 - 12:51 pm

Thanks. Do we know when the CBTC signal work will be over? When it’s over, will the service disruptions on the 7 stop or mostly stop?

Brian May 19, 2011 - 9:47 pm

The MTA states that installation of CBTC should be done by 2016, but look how long it took to install CBTC on the BMT Canarsie Line…sigh…but I personally think it should be done by 2017-2020. Yes, they will continue (Blame them Steinway Tubes) and save for some track (switch and signals as well) maintenance work, but the service disruptions should be drastically reduced when this is all done.

AlexB May 20, 2011 - 10:13 am

Wow. I had no idea this kind of work takes so much time. You’d think they could replace all the signals in 2-3 years. Maybe they don’t have enough money to do it all at once.

JoshK May 21, 2011 - 10:21 pm

Its not just the signal heads themselves, but the control cabinets, the wiring, the conduits the wiring goes in, connecting the new control cabinets to the MTA’s digital network, all while trains continue to operate. You have to work around the operation of the existing system, which means things take longer. I’m sure if the MTA could shut down the entire #7 line for 18 months, it would get done real quick, but we all know that can’t happen. So instead it gets done a little bit at a time, for a few hours late at night or on weekends. Cheap, fast or quality: pick two, is the motto of construction.

Linkage: Park Slope Stoop Faces Explained; Bike Lane Goes to Court - The Broker Buddy May 18, 2011 - 6:12 pm

[…] zero progress [NYO] · What’s up with the faces on Park Slope stoops? [Gothamist] · MTA begins repairs to the 7 line [SAS] · First court appearance for Brooklyn bike lane lawsuit brings no results [Streetsblog] […]

Kai B May 20, 2011 - 11:30 am

This morning at Court Square I saw workers remove the temporary signage instructing you how to get from the E/M and G to the 7. One can hope this means the new transfer is opening. Otherwise customers will get even more lost!


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