MANHATTAN — The J/Z train ranked as the top subway line in the city for the first time in the Straphangers Campaign's annual State of the Subways' 14-year history.
The J/Z's regularity of service helped propel it into the top spot. The report ranked the C and 2 trains as the worst of the subway's 18 lines, based on an extensive review of official data for subway service, according to the report released Wednesday.
The C train received the overall worst rating five times since the report began in 1997, including the last three years in a row.
A train line could receive a perfect “MetroCard Rating” of $2.25 — the price of a ride — if it ranked, on average, in the top 5 percent of six categories: frequency of scheduled service, the regularity of train arrivals, mechanical failures, chance of getting a seat, clealiness and in-car announcements.
The J/Z, which runs between Broad Street in Manhattan and Jamaica Center in Queens, received a score of $1.45.
The 2 and C ranked worst with ratings of 90 cents. The 2 had the lowest rating for seat availability at rush hours and next-to-worst rating for regularity of service.
The C line performed worst in three categories: scheduled service, delay by mechanical breakdowns and in-car announcements.
However, not all straphangers agreed with the report.
“I like the 2 and 3 lines most. They’re just running straight,” said Felicia Branch, 38, from Brooklyn, who often travels on the J/Z, 2, 3 and 5 trains. “I think they’re doing good.”
Despite service cuts last year, the report found improvements in service and in the rate of car breakdowns. It found "no meaningful change" in the subway cars' cleanliness and "a slight drop off" in subway car announcement quality.
“It’s probably too early to measure the full impacts of the 2010 cuts,” said Gene Russianoff, senior attorney for the Straphangers Campaign.
“What’s clear is that many riders on the top-rated lines are getting much better service than those taking lines that are at the bottom of the barrel.”
The 7, E and Q lines received a $1.35 rating; the 6 and L lines received a $1.25 rating; the F line received a $1.20 rating; and 1, D and N lines came in at $1.10.
The 7 line had topped the list the previous two years.
The report found 12 lines had declined in service (1, 3, 4, 5, 7, A, E, G, L, M, N and Q) while eight improved (2, 6, B, C, D, F, J/Z and R).
Detailed score of each line could be seen at Straphangers Campaign website.