MTA attempts to alleviate chaos for LIRR riders after many complaints about new train schedules

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Monday, March 6, 2023
MTA attempts to ease commute confusion for LIRR riders
The MTA's changes to the LIRR are already under way, but some riders still aren't happy.

MIDTOWN EAST, Manhattan (WABC) -- The MTA's changes to the LIRR are already underway, but some riders still aren't happy.

This comes in response to complaints after the MTA brought full service to Grand Central Madison.

As of Monday, three more shuttle trains to Brooklyn were be added for the morning commute. Riders can hop on a 6:45 a.m. train, a 7:39 a.m. train, or an 8:09 a.m. train to get to Atlantic Terminal.

Commuters still complained of late trains and last minute track changes.

"I have to change at Jamaica every train now. My normal train is not in service anymore after 12 years," Laura Gorman said.

Last week, videos on social media showed trains with standing room only out of Penn Station, and packed platforms at Jamaica.

MTA interim President Catherine Rinaldi told Eyewitness News that she is listening to these complaints. The railroad added more cars to some of those congested, Manhattan-bound trains.

"So some of know there were eight car trains and now they're 10 car trains, or 10 car trains, now they're 12 car trains, gives people a little more opportunity to spread out," Rinaldi said.

The Brooklyn situation is a bit different. She says the sheer volume of traffic at Jamaica means it is tough for those Atlantic Terminal trains to cross all those tracks.

"It's been horrific. It's about an hour each way, so it's now up to about 4 hours, which was a little more 3, about 3 hours 15 minutes, before, It's unacceptable what's going on," Ron Carter said.

A rally was held Monday in Oyster Bay by Town Supervisor Joe Saladino.

A dozen elected officials, some commuters and business owners also attended. The group launched an online petition which has been signed by more than 2,000 commuters.

They are against New York State's plan to increase the MTA Payroll Mobility Tax and cutting Long Island Rail Road service.

The MTA says they won't be making any major schedule adjustments in the near future, but they are working with riders to make commutes easier. Customer service workers in bright orange vests assisted people in making their connections on Monday

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