With high traffic predicted for Memorial Day weekend, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is urging New Yorkers to #TakeTheTrain or #TakeTheBus to the beach or get around New York City region to beat the traffic. Memorial Day Weekend is historically a high-traffic weekend as it signals the opening of many beaches in the region and this year the American Automobile Association is predicting 60% more travelers on the roads than last year. On May 12, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced beaches and pools will operate with six-foot social distancing in anticipation of Memorial Day with the goal to reopen them to 100 percent capacity by July 4.
Last year, the Authority urged essential travel only as New York was at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. This year, the Authority is encouraging New Yorkers to use mass transit as they move throughout New York City for the long weekend. The MTA launched its robust #TakeTheTrain, #TakeTheBus campaign on May 16 to encourage New Yorkers to return to the system and experience all that the New York City region has to offer.
“It feels so good to reap the rewards of the hard work all of us put in to get through a once-in-a-century pandemic,” said MTA Chairman and CEO Patrick Foye. “As the region reopens, we want to remind you that the best way to get to the beach this weekend, and around the city and region, is by taking the bus or train.”
The MTA detailed service options for those traveling on Memorial Day, Monday, May 31.
New York City Subway, Buses and Staten Island Railway
On Monday, May 31, New York City subways and buses and Staten Island Railway will operate on a Sunday schedule.
Additional planned service changes due to work to maintain and upgrade tracks, signals, stations and other infrastructure may be found on new.MTA.info or the MYmta app which provides customers with real-time service updates and can help them plan their trip.
On buses, the Bx12 will start operating to Orchard Beach Memorial Day weekend through Sept. 6. The Q35 and Q22 will be start stopping at Jacob Riis Park Memorial Day weekend through Sept. 6.
Metro-North Railroad and Long Island Rail Road
For Memorial Day, Monday, May 31, Metro-North will operate on a regular weekend schedule and the LIRR will operate on a holiday schedule.
On Friday, May 28, Metro-North will run higher capacity trains to accommodate customers heading out early for the three-day weekend, and extra trains on the weekend for its New Haven Line.
On Saturday, May 29, Metro-North will add three extra trains from New Haven to Grand Central in the morning and three extra trains from Grand Central to New Haven in the late afternoon. On Sunday and Monday, May 30 and 31, the railroad will add two extra New Haven Line trains from New Haven to Grand Central in the morning and two extra trains from Grand Central to New Haven in the afternoon.
On Memorial Day, Metro-North will operate shuttle trains between Grand Central and Yankees/E 153rd St Station, and add an extra train from Poughkeepsie to Grand Central for the New York Yankees 1:05 p.m. game against the Tampa Bay Rays. All express trains from Poughkeepsie to Grand Central will also stop at Yankees/E 153rd St station. An extra train from New Haven to Grand Central will also operate with a transfer to Hudson Line trains and shuttle trains to the stadium at Harlem-125th Street. Customers can plan their trip using TrainTime, or the point-to-point trip planner.
MTA Bridges and Tunnels
Routine maintenance and temporary construction will be suspended beginning 1 p.m. on Thursday, May 27 through 6 a.m. on Tuesday, June 1, with the exception of overnight work at the Throgs Neck Bridge and Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.
Channels for Service Updates
Information about the planned schedule change noted in this press release, and all planned service changes, is available through the MTA’s many real-time service information sources.
MYmta app – Customers who use the comprehensive MYmta smartphone app will see real-time travel information for all MTA services all in one place.
new.MTA.info–The “Service Status” box at new.MTA.info is always the definitive source for the latest status for each line.
Live Subway Map – The MTA launched a public beta of its groundbreaking Live Subway Map on Oct. 20. In its first iteration the Live Subway Map shows the real-time position of trains, planned service changes at any given time, highlight accessible stations, and much more.
Email and text message service updates – Customers are urged to sign up to receive alerts, tailored by specific branch and time of day, by visiting www.MyMTAAlerts.com.
WhatsApp – Customers can chat with NYC Transit and Metro-North via WhatsApp. NYC Transit first added the function last year and following its success Metro-North introduced this tool for their customers in March. WhatsApp expands the number of customer service channels available to riders and is especially helpful for non-native English speakers. Riders can receive customer service support in their native language through the help of Google Translate. LIRR customers can access a similar chat feature through the LIRR TrainTime app.
Apple Business Chat – NYC Transit recently launched its Apple Business Chat pilot that allows iPhone users to communicate directly with NYC Transit and get real-time updates.
These communication channels can be accessed while at home or on the go. For customers who are located at stations, the MTA will post the latest service updates on digital signs at station platforms and will make audio announcements over public address systems, and on-board announcements made by train crews.
For those who prefer to contact the MTA by telephone, information is available by dialing 511, the New York State Travel Information Line. Connecticut customers should call 877-690-5114. Those who are deaf or hard of hearing can use their preferred service provider for the free 711 relay to reach the MTA at 511.