LIRR riders still upset over Jamaica transfer after MTA changes Grand Central Madison schedules

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority changed Long Island Rail Road schedules and added more cars to some trains on Monday, a week after the launch of full service in Grand Central Madison brought new schedules that outraged passengers.

But the changes weren’t enough for some Long Islanders who said they were upset with the transfer to the Jamaica Terminal in Queens for a ride that previously offered a one-seater ride to or from Penn Station. in Manhattan.

“I don’t know a single person who isn’t affected by the schedules,” Maya Charland, a LIRR commuter, said at the Jamaica terminal on Monday evening. “I’ve never heard a single person say, ‘Hey, that’s better. »

MTA officials announced the launch of full service in Grand Central Madison as a 40% increase in weekday service for the LIRR. But the change also moved dozens of trains that traveled to or from Penn Station to the new terminal building on Manhattan’s east side.

In the rush to transfer to Jamaica on Monday night, a woman fell down a flight of stairs. She declined to give her name – but said she had missed her connection and would have to wait another 40 minutes at the Queens terminal.

MTA officials said they had started running trains in Jamaica to make connections easier — and noted they had deployed dozens of staff to help guide passengers through the changes.

“There were fewer people on the trains this morning, passenger flow to Jamaica was much better thanks in part to Penn and Grand Central trains arriving at nearby platforms for easier transfers, and many trains that had were more congested last week received additional cars,” said Catherine Rinaldi, acting president of Long Island Rail Road and president of Metro-North. “(Gov. Kathy Hochul) has challenged us to provide the kind of service our customers want and deserve and we are moving forward with an enhanced service plan.”

MTA officials said Monday that the longer trains would help reduce congestion on the LIRR, and noted that the changes reduced peak progress from 12 minutes to eight minutes on trains traveling to or from the terminal. ‘Atlantic, where passengers saw the biggest reductions compared to last week’s changes.

LIRR rider Bridget — who declined to give her last name because she works for the city’s Department of Education — commutes between Atlantic Terminal and Rockville Center on Long Island each day. She said the new schedules took her one-seater ride away from her and the extra train didn’t solve the problem.

“They didn’t do anything for the people of Brooklyn,” she said. “We can manage proximity. We are above. But the lack of service, the lack of deadlines, the lack of connections…. It’s not surprising.

MTA officials said about 34% of LIRR passengers flew into Grand Central Madison Monday morning, up from an average of about 30% last week.

One of those passengers who switched to the new terminal was Allen Parker, who commutes from Glen Cove on Long Island. He works on Manhattan’s East Side and needs to connect to Jamaica, but now he can ride a comfortable LIRR train to the gleaming new MTA terminal.

“For anyone who has lost faith in the government’s ability to do anything right, the new LIRR station in Grand Central is fabulous,” Parker said. “I have to change and it’s unpleasant, but I’m close to my job – and I don’t have to take the metro.”

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