The Metropolitan Transportation Authority award of a contract to the firm of Siemens and Thales for installation of Communication Based Train Control (CBTC) on the F line could offer more benefits to commuters from South Brooklyn to Queens.
The $253 million signal modernization project will replace an antiquated 70-year-old signal system between Church Avenue and Coney Island. Work is anticipated to be completed some time in 2022.
Between 1968 and 1976, New York City Transit routinely used the middle track during rush hour south of the Church Avenue Station for Manhattan-bound trains between Kings Highway and Borough Hall for express service. During the evening peak, it was used in reverse for Brooklyn-bound express service.
In 2019, NYC Transit reintroduced, on a very limited basis, two morning and evening express trains using this long-forgotten middle track.
Upon completion of CBTC, NYC Transit could decide to extend rush-hour express service by operating more trains to stations south of Church Avenue using the middle track. This could save thousands of commuters even more time.
Why not take advantage of this underutilized asset upon completion of CBTC on this subway line?