By Carla Zanoni
INWOOD — Riders of the 1 train in Northern Manhattan will face major travel woes in September when the MTA begins a two-year rebuilding project at the Dyckman Street Station and renovations of all the stations north of it.
The northbound tracks at the Dyckman station will be taken out of service from September until June 2011, at which point the southbound track will be closed, the MTA said.
Dyckman station will be demolished and the MTA will build a new station to replace the crumbling platform, railings and staircase.
The work, which is scheduled to be performed on 28 weekends over the two-year period, will limit 1 train service between 168th and 242nd streets. It will also affect travel on Fort George, Hillside and Nagle streets, which border Dyckman station.
Once the station is closed, riders will need to either detour into the Bronx or further downtown. They can also walk to the A train or board nearby shuttle buses.
The project also includes the reconstruction of stairs and canopies at the 207th and 215th Street stations as well as multiple stations in northern Bronx. However, MTA officials said there are currently no plans to rehabilitate the 181 Street station, which was damaged when the station's ceiling collapsed last year.
Although Northern Manhattan residents said they were happy to hear of the plans to rebuild the Dyckman station, many were concerned that the project will make their commutes intolerable.
“This is going to be a nightmare,” said Inwood resident Mildred Causona, 43, while standing on the 1 train platform on Dyckman Street Wednesday morning. “I live on the 1 train to go everywhere. The A train is too far and buses are too slow.”
MTA spokesman Marcus Book said that the MTA is planning to make travel as seamless and quick for commuters as possible during construction and urged riders to use the A train.
Book said that the MTA has no plans to run more trains to make up for the increase in passengers at other stations and said that the line is already running at full capacity.