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Broadway in Manhattan


pjbr40

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Why does the Q train must go to 49 street (when it extend to ditmars blvd.) after switching track at 42 street? Isnt there a switch before 57 st? where does the extra express tracks go after 57 st?( to the future 2 ave?) This been puzzling me for years and wander if any of you have the info.

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Why does the Q train must go to 49 street (when it extend to ditmars blvd.) after switching track at 42 street? Isnt there a switch before 57 st? where does the extra express tracks go after 57 st?( to the future 2 ave?) This been puzzling me for years and wander if any of you have the info.

 

IIRC they store Put ins trains along 57-42 St on the express track for Rush Hours.

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Why does the Q train must go to 49 street (when it extend to ditmars blvd.) after switching track at 42 street? Isnt there a switch before 57 st? where does the extra express tracks go after 57 st?( to the future 2 ave?) This been puzzling me for years and wander if any of you have the info.

 

When the (Q) goes to Astoria, it switches before Times Square and runs on the local track, stopping at 49th Street. Normally, when the (Q) ends at 57th Street, the (Q) runs express. Lately, though, the (Q) has to switch to the local tracks and stop at 49th Street and 42nd Street. Then it goes back to the express tracks. As tvega961 said, there are some put-in trains on the express tracks, which is why the (Q) does so much switching.

 

As for the express tracks after 57th, they run to 63rd Street. These tracks will be used for the Second Avenue subway. These tracks, and two now-disconnected local tracks after 57th Street were intended to go under Central Park West. Apparently, the BMT and IND bidded who would get to build the Central Park West line, so the BMT built these tracks to get a "headstart". However, the IND apparently won it.

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It isn't just because of the layups (which weren't even there before). there is apparently a high demand for 49th St. on the Astoria line and Queens in general, so whatever express runs to Astoria (or even Queens Blvd) has always stopped at 49th, even back before Chrystie. After Chrystie, express service to Queens was discontinued completely (It was only the 70(EE) and 70(RR), until the cutbacks of the 70's, when the (N) was extended to Continental, and even that had to have a supplemental local service in the peak direction in rush hours).

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49th street is a very busy station. there are ridership and customer service reasons to this decision too...it's not all operational.

 

making an express saves not that much time there because it's one station extra. making the stop cuts the service headway in half for the thousands who use 49th street every day.

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Yes, 49th Street has a high ridership and has since I was in high school in the 1970s. However, the logic of pulling an express onto the local track is akin to the (2) and (3) switching onto 50th Street because it too has high volume. The (Q) should switch north of 57th Street to keep traffic flow more fluid through Midtown. Even the (N) would be better served by running through Montague to keep the (Q) tracks clear. The Broadway line is simply too slow as it is presently configured. What was once a speedy line is just one long slow conga line to be avoided whenever possible.

 

Just my $2.25 on the matter!

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Yes, 49th Street has a high ridership and has since I was in high school in the 1970s. However, the logic of pulling an express onto the local track is akin to the (2) and (3) switching onto 50th Street because it too has high volume. The (Q) should switch north of 57th Street to keep traffic flow more fluid through Midtown. Even the (N) would be better served by running through Montague to keep the (Q) tracks clear. The Broadway line is simply too slow as it is presently configured. What was once a speedy line is just one long slow conga line to be avoided whenever possible.

 

Just my $2.25 on the matter!

 

It takes the same amount of time for a train to pass through the switches at 42nd street as it does for the same train to pass through the switches at 57th street.

 

N through Montague would slow that line's service down considerably and also leave you with more tunnel trains serving DeKalb (since the N going over the bridge allows it to use the bypass), creating a bottleneck south of the station at the switches. The stations on lower Broadway don't have very high ridership anyway when compared to the rest of the line (including 49th street). Comparing a local station on the BMT Broadway (49th street) to a local station on the IRT West Side (50th St (1)) is an invalid comparison because the 1 train runs extremely frequently, so additional service is not required at 50th street...or 59th/Columbus Circle...or 66th/Lincoln Center.

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It takes the same amount of time for a train to pass through the switches at 42nd street as it does for the same train to pass through the switches at 57th street.

 

N through Montague would slow that line's service down considerably and also leave you with more tunnel trains serving DeKalb (since the N going over the bridge allows it to use the bypass), creating a bottleneck south of the station at the switches. The stations on lower Broadway don't have very high ridership anyway when compared to the rest of the line (including 49th street). Comparing a local station on the BMT Broadway (49th street) to a local station on the IRT West Side (50th St (1)) is an invalid comparison because the 1 train runs extremely frequently, so additional service is not required at 50th street...or 59th/Columbus Circle...or 66th/Lincoln Center.

 

 

 

Sam makes a good point that a conga line does form between Canal and 57th/7th Ave. This is proof why the (W) should have stayed as at least a rush hour train and help with the conga line.

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It takes the same amount of time for a train to pass through the switches at 42nd street as it does for the same train to pass through the switches at 57th street.

 

N through Montague would slow that line's service down considerably and also leave you with more tunnel trains serving DeKalb (since the N going over the bridge allows it to use the bypass), creating a bottleneck south of the station at the switches. The stations on lower Broadway don't have very high ridership anyway when compared to the rest of the line (including 49th street). Comparing a local station on the BMT Broadway (49th street) to a local station on the IRT West Side (50th St (1)) is an invalid comparison because the 1 train runs extremely frequently, so additional service is not required at 50th street...or 59th/Columbus Circle...or 66th/Lincoln Center.

 

The Montague tunnel no longer runs (Mx) trains and at one time also served Bankers' Special 70(RR) trains. (N) trains would hardly slow service down. Lower Manhattan is being redeveloped and with the WTC tower almost completed, expect increased ridership in the coming months and years.

 

When the (Mx) ran as the 4th Avenue express, it shared tracks with the (N)and (R); no bottlenecks then because headways on all three were long as they are now.

 

I have to disagree with the IRT and BMT comparison being invalid. You have two lines within yards of each other. If the 7th Avenue line needs only one local, the Broadway line should be able to service that same locale with two lines. If two lines can't service 49th Street, then the locals should have increased service. The (Q) bypassing 49th Street and switching north of 57th Street allows for more fluid movement through Midtown. It might even make sense to make all three trains run local to avoid three switching points in such a short span.

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The Montague tunnel no longer runs (Mx) trains and at one time also served Bankers' Special 70(RR) trains. (N) trains would hardly slow service down. Lower Manhattan is being redeveloped and with the WTC tower almost completed, expect increased ridership in the coming months and years.

 

When the (Mx) ran as the 4th Avenue express, it shared tracks with the (N)and (R); no bottlenecks then because headways on all three were long as they are now.

 

That was then this is now. The reason trains run through the DeKalb bypass is during the rush hour they can directly access the 4th avenue express tracks without needing to go over any switches. If you run the N via tunnel, you bring it in to DeKalb, it makes the station stop, then it continues to 4th avenue, the tower must identify the train and route it to the express track, which means a move over a switch which now jams up D train traffic already running on that track, which must be held out to allow the move.

 

Northbound the reverse is true. Train has to cross in front of the R, or be held out to allow the R to pass, causing delays to the N and the D. Then you have two trains (N and R) back to back all the way through the tube. It's bad operations planning to do it that way.

 

I have to disagree with the IRT and BMT comparison being invalid. You have two lines within yards of each other. If the 7th Avenue line needs only one local, the Broadway line should be able to service that same locale with two lines. If two lines can't service 49th Street, then the locals should have increased service. The (Q) bypassing 49th Street and switching north of 57th Street allows for more fluid movement through Midtown. It might even make sense to make all three trains run local to avoid three switching points in such a short span.

 

It's absolutely invalid. It's not about the location of the line but the frequency of the service:

 

-During rush hour, 1 trains arrive approximately every 3 minutes (20 trains per hour).

 

-The Q running local allows the BMT to approximately match that service, because during the rush R trains run approximately every 9 minutes, and N train approximately every 8. (13-14 trains per hour without the Q).

 

The Q runs a flexible headway during the rush hour which varies from as little as 6 (two trains) to as much as 10 minutes, but the majority of the trains run 8-10 minutes. This allows the BMT to make up the additional trains through the station to match the IRT's frequency of service.

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Yes, 49th Street has a high ridership and has since I was in high school in the 1970s. However, the logic of pulling an express onto the local track is akin to the (2) and (3) switching onto 50th Street because it too has high volume. The (Q) should switch north of 57th Street to keep traffic flow more fluid through Midtown. Even the (N) would be better served by running through Montague to keep the (Q) tracks clear. The Broadway line is simply too slow as it is presently configured. What was once a speedy line is just one long slow conga line to be avoided whenever possible.

 

Just my $2.25 on the matter!

Putting the (N) back in the Montague Tunnel is redundant and will cause overcrowding on the (Q) at DeKalb. Unlike skipping 49th Street, going over the Manhattan Bridge makes a big difference in running times. They never should have made the (N) local in Manhattan. If bringing back the (W) is not an option until 2nd Avenue opens, then why can't they just run more (R) trains, so that it can provide sufficient local service between Canal and 34th Street by itself?

 

On the other hand, having all trains - (N), (Q) and (R) - running on the local tracks between Times Square and the 60th Street Tunnel does make for slow service and frequent delays on the Broadway BMT Line. But the only way they're going to get ride of that is to not have any more "hybrid express-local" services like the current weekday (Q) service and the weekday (N) service pre-6/28/10. But that can't happen until 2nd Avenue opens because there has to be enough service to run on the Astoria and Queens Boulevard Local lines. Once 2nd Avenue opens, then you can have (N) and (Q) trains running solely on the Broadway Express tracks from the Manhattan Bridge to the 2nd Avenue Line and (R) and (W) trains can run solely on the Broadway Local tracks from Lower Broadway to the 60th Street Tunnel. There would be no need to switch from express to local tracks and switching would be kept to a minimum. This would allow trains to flow more smoothly on the Broadway BMT Line and reduce delays significantly.

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You all have your points, but even being inconvenienced myself by the current service patterns, I think it's a necessary "evil" to run things this way. Think about the different scenarios for a moment:

  1. Previous Service Pattern: (N) as express, via bridge; (Q) as Brighton Local, Broadway Express, via bridge; (R) as local via tunnel; (W) as local
    Pros: Most people along the Sea Beach line heading towards Chinatown or Flushing get a quick ride on the N there; they're are not heading for lower Manhattan or any of the other Manhattan stops anyway. Brighton riders prefer Broadway service to Midtown over 6 Avenue and hence the Q runs local there and express in Manhattan. The R is to provide service to any gaps left behind by the N and Q (in Lower Manhattan and along 4 Avenue) as well as local service along Broadway. The W is there to handle the extra volume of passengers along Broadway.
    Cons: As the Broadway trunk line is horribly imbalanced (1 tunnel from the north and 3 from the south) between its north and south ends, squeezing 4 lines into it and having a lot of switching made it prone to delays. 34 Street–Herald Square became a bottleneck for all trains along Broadway.
  2. Current Service Pattern: (N) as Broadway Local, 4 Avenue Express, via bridge; (Q) as Broadway Express, Brighton Local, via bridge; (R) as local via tunnel; no (W) service
    Pros: Saves money by having one less line (and thus, less trains to run). Broadway gets to keep 2 much-needed local services. Passengers along Sea Beach get to keep their fast trip to Chinatown. The Q, while making a seemingly useless express run actually keeps trains moving along the Broadway line.
    Cons: Travel to Flushing is slower. Express service along Broadway is mostly useless due to the reduced headway because the lower probability of catching an express train makes it not worth the wait for quick travel between the major Broadway stations. You are better off taking whatever train comes first. For local riders at Canal Street going uptown, you have to choose between the upper and lower level effectively cutting the service at the station in half.
  3. Moar Express!: (N) as express via bridge; (Q) as Broadway Express, Brighton Local, via bridge; (R) as local via tunnel; no (W) service
    Pros: Besides those mentioned in 1 and 2, there are none.
    Cons: There is only one Broadway local service. Seeing how crowded the local stations can get, it'd be crazy to leave the local stations to one line.
  4. Making All Stops—All Stops: (N) as local via tunnel; (Q) as local via bridge; (R) as local via tunnel; no (W) service
    Pros: People needing frequent and convenient access to lower Manhattan get orgasms. The Q still bypasses lower Manhattan at least to shift a bottleneck at Dekalb Avenue to Prince Street.
    Cons: Lower Manhattan options are numerous. You have the 2, 3, 4, 5, A, C, and R currently. Each and every Brooklyn line has transfer opportunities to a line that goes through lower Manhattan, so extra service there is redundant. Note that the Broadway trunk line is horribly imbalanced with 3 lines feeding it from Brooklyn, and only 1 line out to Queens. Now instead of spreading those 3 lines over 2 tracks in each direction, you cram them into 1. The buffer zone between 34 Street–Herald Square and Prince Street that decreases the likelihood of conga lines is now gone and the problem zone has expanded from between Queens and 34 Street–Herald Square to between Queens and Canal Street.

 

As for express trains stopping at 49 Street, it really is only 1 stop, and a busy one. The switch at 57 Street or 34 Street–Herald Square would have made little difference. The only argument for use of the express track is either to expand the "buffer zone" (to give more breathing room in the case of high traffic), or to smooth operations when the 2 Avenue line opens. I've been on (Q) trains were heavy congestion forced the (Q) to skip 49 Street only to merge into the local track just south of 57 Street proceeding to Queens. There were probably more trains behind on both the local and express tracks right behind that they didn't want to hold up.

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Just like to point out that before the connection between the Queens Blvd and Astoria line was built, all the Broadway locals ran to Ditmars. While building the IND-BMT connection was a plus for Queens Blvd local riders who wanted direct Manhattan access, it did effectively halve service in Astoria and necessitated more trains through the tunnel, which has led to the imbalance of lines as previously mentioned. The extension to SAS should fix this problem considerably.

 

Also, express service is only nice if 1) there's enough service servicing the local stations (that means 15 tph minimum, 20 preferably) and 2) headways on the express trains are low enough such that waiting doesn't cancel out the gained time from skipping stops. Hence, Broadway needs 2 express lines from the UES to Brooklyn via the bridge and 2 local lines from Queens into Downtown in the future.

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I still think that the switch at Prince-Canal slows things down. Other than adding length to the (N) by making it go thru Lower Manhattan, it wouldn't be that much worse [switching back to the express north of Pacific] than now with the (N) switching back south of Prince St.

 

Everyone who suggests that the (N) go through the tunnel don't understand how much time going over the bridge saves. It saves at least 10 minutes. Waiting a minute or 2 before Prince for the other train to go first? I'll gladly take it. And it isn't even much of an issue on days when trains run on schedule.

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Everyone who suggests that the (N) go through the tunnel don't understand how much time going over the bridge saves. It saves at least 10 minutes. Waiting a minute or 2 before Prince for the other train to go first? I'll gladly take it. And it isn't even much of an issue on days when trains run on schedule.

During those G.O. when the Broadway trains run local, I'd gladly walk further to take the (D). The lines are pretty close together in Manhattan up until 57 Street where it only follows the 63 Street line to Queens.

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