Reopen News: Subway and bus service updates in New York City

NEW YORK (WABC) -- The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has resumed regular weekday service as New York City began reopening, with precautions in place to ensure the safety of essential workers and all New Yorkers.

The MTA announced that on Friday, June 19, weekday combined ridership on New York City subways and buses surpassed 2 million for the first time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March. While a significant increase since the start of the pandemic, the figure represents a decline of 74% from normal weekday ridership levels of 7.6 million combined riders. LIRR ridership is down 85% from normal levels and Metro-North is down 87%.

The MTA has prepared its system for further ridership gains through increased service, unprecedented, around-the-clock cleaning and disinfecting, and by requiring all customers and employees wear masks.

With mask compliance at 95%, the MTA continues to distribute 2 million masks that were contributed by the State and the City. Approximately 760 New York City School Safety Agents who have been positioned across subway stations to distribute masks will maintain their existing coverage with additional masks available at station booths.
The MTA's 13-point action plan during the reopening includes:
-Increased service
-Unprecedented cleaning and disinfecting
-Mandatory face coverings
-Enhanced safety and security
-Nation-leading employee safety initiatives
-Innovative cleaning solutions
-Hand sanitizer, which will be in stations across the system (The MTA will also distribute mini bottles)
-Floor markings, directional arrows and new signage
-Staggered Business Hours
-2 million mask contribution from state, city
-Contactless payments
-New partnership and technology to make system safer
-Data dashboard to provide riders with daily ridership numbers

Subways and Buses:

Subways returned to regular weekday service, but overnight subway closure from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. remain in effect.

There are new markings and signage with directional cues to help maintain social distancing:

Bus service levels have been operating at regular weekday/closed school service levels in Brooklyn, The Bronx, Queens and Staten Island since New York City's Phase 1 reopening on June 8. In Manhattan, the MTA is increasing service to 90 on four Select Bus Service routes, the M15, M23, M34 and M60. These increases raise the overall Manhattan bus service level to 80% of normal, from 75% as of the Phase 1 reopening on June 8.

The MTA is also urging riders who can travel outside peak hours (after 9 a.m. and before 3 a.m.) to do so.

The city has implemented 20 total new miles of busways and bus lanes that will serve nearly 750,000 daily rides, with faster travel and more frequent buses designed to increase social distancing.

The overnight closures do not affect the Staten Island Railway, which will continue running during those hours.

The MTA will continue to run enhanced bus service between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. to help get essential workers where they need to go. If bus service is not an option, essential workers can use the Essential Connector program.

Check for updates.

Staten Island Ferry

The Staten Island Ferry has increased service for Phase 1, with service every 20 minutes during peak times and every 30 minutes off-peak.

There are social distancing markers and demarcated seats, and hand sanitizer and face coverings are widely available.


The LIRR has increased train service to 90% of its pre-pandemic schedule.

Metro North

As of June 22, Metro-North offers 12 additional trains, bringing the railroad's East-of-Hudson service levels to 63% of normal levels.

More LIRR and Metro-North information is available here.


NJ Transit is running a normal weekday bus service. Normal rail service is expected to resume in July.


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