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Delay-Plagued 7 Line Deserves Immediate MTA Upgrades, Queens Officials Say

  Local leaders and transit advocates want the MTA to do a full review of service on the 7 line.
Local leaders and transit advocates want the MTA to do a full review of service on the 7 line.
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DNAinfo/Katie Honan

SUNNYSIDE — Local leaders and transit advocates fed up with delays and overcrowding on the 7 train are demanding the MTA put it at the top of the list for service upgrades.

City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer and transit advocacy group Access Queens rallied Tuesday at the 40th Street station, saying the MTA should put the long-suffering 7 line at the front of its priorities after ongoing complaints from riders.

"For years now, every one of us can tell story after story about 7 train experiences, and none of them have happy endings," Pat O'Brien, the chairman for Community Board 2, said in a statement.

The group wants the MTA to do a "Full-Line Review" of the 7 — something the agency has done for several of its lettered train lines in recent years, including the G and the A/C.

The reviews comes up with recommendations on how to improve service, and can include things like revising train schedules and renovating stations.

"The MTA cannot ignore the voices of my constituents and all 7 train riders who suffer every day," the councilman said in a statement, in which he demanded the 7 be the first numbered line in the subway system to be reviewed.

MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz said the agency is "fully committed to conducting line reviews of all of the system’s lines," but could not give an estimate on when one for the 7 line would get underway.

For years, 7 train riders have dealt with ongoing weekend service suspensions as the MTA works on several major construction projects, including the installation of a new signal system.

Riders have also complained of delays and disruptions during their weekday commutes, chronicling their daily struggles in a Facebook group called 7 Train Blues.

"This is how much it cost me to get from 33rd St & Queens Blvd to Ditmars Blvd & Steinway St for my appointment since the 7 train decided to stall at the 46th St station indefinitely," one user wrote on the page Monday, in a "letter" to the MTA that included a photo of his $16 taxi receipt.

"Since the fault is 100% yours, I believe you should compensate me and every other rider who had to take an Uber or cab to get to where they needed to go today," he continued.

Other posts on the page include photos of passenger-packed station platforms and gripes about signal malfunctions.

"I legitimately moved away from the 7 line because of the 7 line," one user wrote.

Ortiz said that while "a couple of major incidents," like a broken rail last month, have disrupted 7 train service recently, the MTA has been making inspections and sending additional workers to respond to problems on the line over the past few months.

The MTA is also continuing the major capital improvements that have been underway for the last several years, which he said will "increase the line’s capacity and reliability as ridership demand rises."

"Nearly every element of the line is being improved," he said.