The unique joys of public transportation just added an exciting new prospect to its arsenal: a total shutdown of the L train between Manhattan and Brooklyn. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) confirmed the bummer to the New York Times Monday, adding that the tunnel running under the East River between Manhattan and Brooklyn will be closed for 18 months starting in January 2019.
"It really came down to our wanting to pick an option that minimized inconvenience to the customer," Veronica Hakim, president of New York City transit, said of the temporary shutdown. "This is the, 'Get in, get done, get out' option." The shutdown is necessary, officials said, in order to complete necessary repairs to damage initially caused by Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Though L trains will still operate between Williamsburg and Canarsie in Brooklyn, they will not be there to help you between Manhattan's 8th Avenue stop and Brooklyn's Bedford Avenue station. That means up to 225,000 riders will have their day-to-day commute totally screwed up for a solid 18 months.
The possibility of shutting down the L train has been common knowledge for about 6 months now, with transit officials holding multiple town hall-style meetings in an effort to give voice to frustrated commuters and to hopefully arise at the least annoying solution. To alleviate that annoyance, the Timesreports officials are currently "considering" adding extra subway service from nearby routes and possible extensions of local ferry and bus options.
News of the L train's impending hiatus hit Twitter with the quickness, at which point everyone celebrated with glee. Just kidding:
Keep your heads up and/or move to the glorious West Coast. Just a thought.