By Bill Parry
The MTA will suspend service on the No. 7 subway line from Queensboro Plaza to Manhattan during all four weekends in March. The agency will operate free shuttle buses for Long Island City straphangers who use the Vernon Boulevard-Jackson Avenue, Hunters Point Avenue and Court Square stations so they can take service on the N and W lines at Queensboro Plaza.
Rider of the No. 7 have experienced ongoing service disruptions and suspensions in the last several years as the MTA makes $774 million worth of “critical improvements,” including replacing track beds and repairing the Steinway Tunnel under the East River after it flooded during Superstorm Sandy in 2012.
The MTA said the closures are necessary in March to test the new communications system that has been installed on the line called Communications-Based Train Control, which will increase reliability and allow for extra trains to be added to the service.
“A safe, reliable Flushing Line is critical to the growth of Queens and these projects are critical to the future of the line,” New York City Transit Acting President Darryl Irick said. “Replacing old tracks means a smoother, faster ride for customers. and installing a modern signal system means less crowded and more reliable commutes.”
Service changes will be in effect from 11:30 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. the following Monday during each weekend in March. The schedule is subject to change due to inclement weather, which prevents crews from working on exposed, elevated segments of the line.
Additional suspensions are scheduled for October and November.
Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparr