Friday, September 18, 2020

(E) Train Service To Be Temporarily Suspended As NYCT Begins Phase I Track Work Of Critical Track Replacement Work In Queens

By N Miller. 

QUEENS, NY - If you are a commuter of the (E) Line in Queens, then you're in for one hell of a ride.
Starting on 09/19/2020, there will be no (E) train service between Jamaica-Van Wyck and Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer due to track and third rail replacement work. There will be shuttle service, bus routes, cross-honoring by LIRR, and other train services to connect to JFK AirTrain. Some northbound trips will be rerouted via the (F) Line, weekdays and evenings, between 71st Avenue and 179th Street-Hillside Avenue, the last stop, making local stops.

This phase of the project is expected to take six weeks, continuing to the early morning hours of Monday, Nov. 2. Phase 2 of the project, which will restore some (E) train service in the two-station project corridor, is scheduled to begin in early November and last until mid-December. The project plan came into fruition after discussions with Southeast Queens residence and elected officials, along with a project microsite, and virtual community meetings (held on 08/31 and 09/08). The tracks and third rail are 40+ years old (the Archer Ave extension was constructed from the late 70s to the early 80s). It’s at the end of its life and now it’s the perfect time to perform the replacement work on that segment of the line since ridership (present day) is extremely low and air travel is limited.

The service change seeks to minimize impacts to customers. The MTA is making these upgrades now and coordinating alternative travel options in order to prevent emergency track work and unplanned service changes that would create bigger disruptions for customers than the outage being planned. Since 2016, there have been 46 incidents between Jamaica-Van Wyck and Jamaica Center on the (E) line because of track conditions, resulting in 713 delayed trains. The agency is accelerating the project’s timeline by taking advantage of traditionally low late-summer ridership, as well as low airport travel and low general subway ridership due to the COVID-19 pandemic, to minimize the disruption of the work and impact as few riders as possible. The impact on customers is further reduced due to the ongoing overnight subway shutdown between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m., during which there is robust alternate service available on MTA buses.

The work will require a temporary suspension of E Subway train service at two stations: Sutphin Blvd-Archer Av, and Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer. These stations both have multiple connecting bus lines as well as (J)/(Z) subway service. Sutphin Blvd-Archer Av connects with the Long Island Rail Road’s Jamaica station. MetroCards will be honored at the Long Island Rail Road for travel to and from Jamaica and these stations during Phase 1. These stations are Penn Station, Forest Hills, Kew Gardens, Hollis, Laurelton, Locust Manor, Queens Village, Rosedale, and St. Albans.

What You Should Know

No (E) train service at Sutphin Blvd-Archer Av and Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer. Trains will run between World Trade Center* and Jamaica-Van Wyck from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m., all days. Trains also operate between World Trade Center and 179 St mornings, middays and evenings on weekdays. Keep in mind that during weekdays, 179th St-bound trains will operate local via the (F) line between 179th St and 71st Avenue in both directions. Jamaica-Van Wyck trains will run express between 71st Avenue and Jamaica-Van Wyck (in both directions), stopping at Union Turnpike, on weekdays.

Alternative Services:

  • (J)/(Z) service will continue to be available at Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer and Sutphin Blvd/Archer Av
  • Bus service will be connecting riders between Jamaica Center/Parsons Archer and Parsons Blvd (F) station using the Q25, Q34, Q65, Q83, Q110, Q111, Q112, Q113, & Q114 routes.
  • Bus service connecting riders between Sutphin Blvd Archer Av/JFK Airport and Sutphin Blvd (F) station using the Q20A/B, Q40, Q43, & Q44SBS routes
  • Customers who use wheelchairs or other mobility devices should use Jamaica-Van Wyck (E) Subway or 179 St (F) Subway.
  • Q54 and Q56 bus service will connect riders between Jamaica Center/Parsons Archer and Jamaica-Van Wyck.
  • For continuous service to and from Jamaica Center, customers are encouraged to transfer to and from buses between there and (F) train stops on Hillside Avenue.
  • Connection to JFK AirTrain is available at Sutphin Blvd/Archer Av via the (J/Z) Subway and LIRR, and at Howard Beach via the (A) Subway.
  • Shuttle bus between the Jamaica-Van Wyck and Jamaica Center-Parsons Blvd/Archer Av stations in Queens.
*At this time during the weekends, evenings, and (until 1am) overnight hours, (E) trains will be running over the (F) Line in both directions between 21st St-Queensbridge and Delancey-Essex Sts, the last stop. East Broadway and York St stations will be closed. (F) trains will be running via 8th Av/53rd St in both directions between Queens Plaza and Jay St-MetroTech, due to Rutgers Street tube maintenance. 

Commentary Video Review Of This Project:

In other news, the agency is begging for $12B from Congress to continue the work with third-party companies that does construction and development for them. Long Island Rail Road and MetroNorth are educating the masses on rail safety this week. The goal of National Rail Safety Week is to raise awareness of the need for rail safety education and empower the general public to keep themselves safe near highway-rail grade crossings and railroad rights-of-way. Participation in the national week-long education campaign is part of MTA Railroads’ TRACKS program (Together Railroads And Communities Keeping Safe), a joint venture between the safety departments of the Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad to reach out to schools, camps, day care and community groups. Two guys went off on cops in the subways for not wearing their masks; one of them got called the male version of Karen. Lastly, NYCT's longest, beloved working employee, Frank Gurrera passed away, due to health problems. May his memory remain in our hearts and let his legacy carry on forever. .


  1. The tracks are *not* 70+ years old. That extension only opened in December 1988. Prior to that time both the E and the F ran to 179th full time, and the J ran to 168th St. on the el. That end section was demolished a few years before the Parsons-Archer extension opened, however.

    1. I know that the track are not 70+ years old; they're 40+, just made a typo, now corrected, and yes, we're all well aware of the history of the (E) and (J) before the Archer Avenue extension. Thanks for pointing that out.