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MTA makes ‘rogue’ F train official, skipping six stops in brownstone Brooklyn

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They F’n did it!

After allegedly running a so-called “rogue” express F train for months through brownstone Brooklyn, transit honchos made the controversial service change official on July 10, instituting limited express service along the Manhattan- and Coney Island-bound line that will skip six stops from Cobble Hill to Windsor Terrace in an effort to shorten commutes for transit starved southern Brooklynites.

Beginning in September, four rush hour F trains — two Manhattan-bound trains in the morning, and two Coney Island-bound trains in the evening — would run daily between Jay Street-Metrotech and Church Avenue stations, stopping only at the Seventh Avenue station in between.

Six Brooklyn stops — Bergen Street, Carroll Street, Smith-Ninth Street, Fourth Avenue-Ninth Street, 15th Street-Prospect Park, and Fort Hamilton Parkway — will be skipped.

No new trains would be added under the current proposal — rather, four existing local trains would be recommissioned to run express.

Councilman Brad Lander (D–Park Slope), whose district encompasses all six stations slated to be skipped, blasted the Transit Authority for playing up a service cut as an enhancement.

“This plan adds no service whatsoever, it simply eliminates service at six local stations that are already experiencing over-crowding,” he said. “Despite the effort to dress this up as an improvement for some commuters, bypassing these stations amounts to cutting service for thousands of other riders.”

Lander — along with multiple other elected leaders, including state Sen. Brian Kavanagh (D–Cobble Hill) and Assemblyman Robert Carroll (D–Windsor Terrace) — signed a letter sent to the MTA in March, demanding answers to reports of F trains routinely skipping stops with no forewarning.

“We write to express the frustration of our constituents about ‘Rogue F Express’ trains, the increasingly frequent practice of F trains bypassing local stations,” read the letter. “Our constituents report missing their stops, waiting as trains pass them by, being late to work or home, and feeling immensely frustrated with erratic service.”

Kavanagh slammed the MTA’s decision to formalize the ‘rouge’ F and demanded guarantees that the new express service would not impose delays at skipped stops.

“It’s disappointing that the MTA has decided to reduce service to stations that thousands of New Yorkers use during peak hours,” he said in a statement. “We will be seeking assurances from the MTA that the scheduled reduction in frequency of local trains will not be compounded by routine disruptions in local service at stations on our communities.”

And after chastising the MTA for failing to consult local elected officials ahead of its decision, Carroll accused the Transit Authority of throwing his constituents under the rug.

“An F express train that creates winners and losers throughout my district, is not the kind of transit system that NYC deserves or needs,” he said.

The head of the MTA brushed off the criticisms, arguing that limited express service would provide overdue relief to southern Brooklyn F train riders who currently commute to Midtown Manhattan on the longest of stretch exclusively local service — 26 uninterrupted stops between Coney Island-Stillwell Avenue and Broadway-Lafayette Street stations — in the city.

“It will benefit thousands of commuters by getting them to their destinations faster instead of sitting waiting as their train makes all local stops,” Andy Byford said in a statement on Wednesday.

Freshman state Sen. Andrew Gounardes (D–Gravesend) praised the Authority, saying the six-stop reduction would make a huge difference for his constituents, who commute upwards of 50 minutes to Manhattan.

“I’m glad the MTA has finally said yes to the F train express, after many years of advocacy,” he said. “The new service will shave valuable time off of the commutes of tens of thousands of southern Brooklynit­es.”

The express trains will be marked with a diamond shaped logo, similar to other express-versions of local lines, when they go into service this fall, according to the MTA.

Reach reporter Aidan Graham at agraham@schnepsmedia.com or by calling (718) 260–4577. Follow him at twitter.com/aidangraham95.
Updated 12:09 pm, July 11, 2019
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Reasonable discourse

Hillary from Prison says:
The tears of the whining entitled transplants taste delicious. It’s about time that the MTA started using the express tracks that were built to get working people from real Brooklyn to their jobs a bit quicker. It’s astounding that the tracks sat unused for decades because a bunch of spoiled brats threw tantrums.
July 11, 11:09 am
Henry Ford from Bay Ridge says:
The only one who seems to be whining is you, who thinks Hillary is going to prison. Get a life, bro!
July 11, 12:21 pm
Cindy says:
Racism against the brown houses?
July 11, 12:39 pm
SCR from Realityville says:
The more affluent will just hire more Ubers&Lyfts,and seriously add(unnecessary),CO2 gasses. How anti-GREEN,the MTA heads,really are. They should proudly co-habit,with President Donald Trump.
July 11, 1:09 pm
Charles from Bklyn says:
Time to have the subway system under the control of the city. Enough!
July 11, 2:37 pm
Jim from Cobble Hill says:
Will it actually use the express track? And is isn't so bad. Would you rather have the V train come back? Ug.
July 11, 3:38 pm
Mary Ann from Gowanus says:
Wow, Hillary for Prison, do you seriously think only "whining entitled transplants" travel to or from those stops? Did you not realize that "whining entitled transplants" usually don't use public transportation? They drive or take Uber or a car service. They don't want to wait out in the weather with the unwashed masses for the elevated F to come! It's still the ordinary locals that take the train. And it's the working people of these neighborhoods that are getting scr@wed by this "express" bull.
July 11, 6:41 pm
Jim from Cobble Hill says:
Aren't the comments here just the bestest?
July 11, 8:35 pm
Carmela La Rousé says:
Wxcuse me - do you have a problem with these "entitled" people because they are trans?! Let them be who they are !!!!!!!!!!!!!
July 12, 3:18 am
Audrey from Midwood says:
2 trains at each "rush hour" does not an express run make. i am on my NB stop at 630/640am. i will miss the "express" start at church ave, which will start at 7am. My 26 station run to get me to work before 8am will not enjoy this so-called express service. the Rogue Express happens when the trains fall behind and the contract insists there are a certain amount of trips per shift. it's not run for the benefit of the passengers. It's time to make it run for us. ADD more express trains to the express run (in both directions)
July 12, 7:42 am
The Hunkster from Bed-Stuy says:
As fellow NYCT President Andy Byford would say: "You can't pleased everyone."
July 12, 9:44 am
Ro from Park Slope says:
As someone who lives at a local stop being passed over, I appreciate that ONLY 2 TRAINS will run express in the morning and evening rush hours for the people who live farther out in Gravesend.
July 12, 10:01 am
Sid from Boerum Hill says:
I remember when they had this all the time(at least to church street and then to and from Coney Island during the rush hour). The difference was that Bergen Street was a stop for Both the local and the express. They can't reopen the lower lever over the Bergen Street stop as they cluttered the platform with equipment. When they had the bergen street stop you could use the G train as the local and then change to the express or local F train. Since these are pre rush hour trains it shouldn't make that much a difference at the local intermediate stops.
July 12, 10:44 am
Audrey from Midwood says:
Ro from Park Slope...i appreciate that only 2 express trains won't compromise your stop too much, i'm sympathetic to THAT. however, the express tracks that are down have been there for DECADES. the system needs to be cleaned up and utilized properly. As Sid indicates, platforms have been used for THINGS, other than people. we continue to pay more and get less. I remember riding the local AND Express when i was younger. and it functioned. Utilize the express the way it was meant to be used.
July 12, 12:21 pm
t from bath beach says:
All those people being skipped over are mostly entitled transplants who moved here from Iowa and rather ride their bicycle or take Uber and just recently conceded their parking spots to electric charging stations.
July 12, 12:59 pm
RP from Midwood says:
To get to Manhattan from Midwood is a long ride. The line was designed to have express service but not being used. Every customer can be satisfied if MTA used the line as designed. The F in Queesn runs express and should be the same in Brooklyn. This is a step in the right direction.
July 12, 1:14 pm
Lawrence from Crown Heights says:
I know my comments have nothing to do with this article but I do have concerns about the MTA. As a lifelong New Yorker, I have seen the MTA go from them little bity tokens to metro cards. Now they want to implement subway fares by utilizing one's debit card. I have issues with this because I don't want my debit card tied to paying a subway fare. Now I have my metro card separate from my debit card and I keep a balance on my metro card. If I had to use my debit card to pay for a ride, you don't think I would use my last money on a ride rather than use my debit card to buy food? I may be old but I dam sure would try to hop the turnstile if I could. Besides, who is to say your debit card couldn't be hacked. This new change is to benefit millennials and not baby boomers like me. I am still wondering why they still have expiration dates on metro cards you pay a dollar for....go figure with the MTA
July 12, 7:18 pm
Yael from Brooklyn, cobble hill says:
Good and smart to have the F go express. Amazing a good decision was made. Also, the so-called "rogue" data gathering must have verified. You can't have a train every two minutes.
July 12, 10:15 pm
Wilbur D. Horse from Mockingbird Heights says:
This is not additional service, which is putting more physical trains out on the rails. The MTA is merely robbing from Peter to pay Paul.
July 13, 7:16 am
Leonard Williams from Homecrest says:
The MTA can only keep on schedule by eliminating regular stops for many commuters. Soon they will eliminate all stops except for the first and last stations on any line. Looks good on paper , but hurts a lot of subway riders
July 14, 12:08 pm
Rick Wells from Midwood says:
I don't know why having 2 trains dedicated to the working men and women who make this city run rather than transplanted interlopers who make only money as minions of a financial empire whose loyalty lies elsewhere than in the Brooklyn neighborhoods (think Park Slope, Williamsburg, Greenpoint, Sunset Park, et al) they have gentrified, neighborhoods that gave the working class. whose loyalty to the city lies in their children and the pride they feel in being NYers, men and women who, in exclaiming with unmeasurable gusto, "I'm from Flatbush, Williamsburg, Bed-Stuy (do or die)" rather I'm from Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, et al...
July 15, 8:49 am
David Greenlee from Windsor Terrace says:
I've found myself on the 'rogue train' a bunch of times, and it worked out well for me even though my 15th St Prospect Park stop gets skipped. Often the rogue train catches up with a local by the time we get to 7th Ave, and I get home just as fast. I'd prefer Brad Lander would not complain about the 'rogue' train before the overall effect can be assessed.
July 15, 1:10 pm

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