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Straphangers Cope With Major MTA Weekend Repairs

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It is a maddening weekend for subway riders, as 17 of the city's 22 lines are affected by construction and disruption. NY1's Ruschell Boone filed the following report.

With the Metropolitan Transportation Authority doing maintenance and construction this weekend, 17 of the city's 22 subway lines — the 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, A, C, D, E, F, G, J, N, Q, R and S lines — are experiencing some type service disruption.

For many, it was confusing, annoying and downright frustrating. Some Q train riders in Downtown Brooklyn said on Saturday night that they had it with all the weekend service disruptions.

"You got to get off at one particular point in Brooklyn, switch to the bus, get back on another train and it's not the train that we need. It's crazy," said one rider.

In Manhattan's Union Square subway station, most of the people who spoke with NY1 on Saturday night were not happy about the changes either.

"I understand the plan was to make the construction go faster but you've got to think of an even better way, I think," said a rider.

"We could have taken one train but we had to take two, and then later tonight we're going to have to take a bus to transfer. It's just going to be annoying," said another rider.

The work is necessary, according to MTA officials and Gene Russianoff, the head of the Straphangers Campaign.

"It's very aggravating for the public but it's very necessary," said Russianoff. "The system is in the shape that it's in because we didn't do these kinds of repairs in the '70s and part of the '80s."

To try to relieve some of that aggravation, the MTA is trying out a new four-day pilot weeknight program on Monday called "FastTrack." The 4, 5 and 6 lines between Grand Central-42nd Street in Manhattan and Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn will be suspended in both directions between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

"I think it's worth trying out and see if it actually achieves the savings they believe it will," said Russianoff.

A recent Transportation Alternatives survey states that 66 percent of people surveyed the people they interviewed support the weeknight overnight track work, but for now the riders will have to roll with the weekend changes.

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