W (New York City Subway service)

The W Broadway Local[2] is a rapid transit service of the New York City Subway's B Division. Its route emblem, or "bullet", is colored yellow since it uses the BMT Broadway Line in Manhattan.[3]

"W" train symbol
Broadway Local
R46 W train at 30th Avenue.jpg
A Whitehall Street-bound W train of R46s leaving 30th Avenue
Map of the "W" train
Note: Dashed pink line shows limited rush hour service to/from Gravesend–86th Street.
Northern endAstoria–Ditmars Boulevard
Southern end
44 (limited service)
Rolling stock144 R46s (18 trains)
24 R68s (3 trains)
16 R68As (2 trains)
100 R160s (10 trains) (Fleet shared with the "N" train)[1]
(Rolling stock assignments subject to change)
DepotConey Island Yard
Started serviceJuly 22, 2001; 20 years ago (2001-07-22)
DiscontinuedJune 25, 2010; 11 years ago (2010-06-25)
ReinstatedNovember 7, 2016; 4 years ago (2016-11-07)
Route map

Down arrow  N  W 
Astoria–Ditmars Boulevard
Astoria Boulevard
30th Avenue
36th Avenue
39th Avenue
Queensboro Plaza
Lexington Avenue–59th Street
Fifth Avenue–59th Street
Down arrow  Q 
( N   R  limited rush)
96th Street
86th Street
72nd Street
Lexington Avenue–63rd Street
57th Street–Seventh Avenue
49th Street
(Disabled access northbound)
Times Square–42nd Street
"N" train
switches to express
tracks during weekdays
34th Street–Herald Square Port Authority Trans-Hudson
28th Street
23rd Street
14th Street–Union Square
Eighth Street–New York University
Prince Street
"N" train
daytime via Manhattan Bridge
late nights via Lower Manhattan
Canal Street
City Hall
Cortlandt Street
Rector Street
Whitehall Street–South Ferry Staten Island Ferry
Up arrow  W  weekdays
(Down arrow  R  late nights)
no regular service via Nassau Street
Montague Tunnel
Court Street
Jay Street–MetroTech
DeKalb Avenue
Atlantic Avenue–Barclays Center MTA NYC logo.svg
Union Street
Ninth Street
Prospect Avenue
25th Street
36th Street
45th Street
53rd Street
59th Street
Eighth Avenue
(Disabled access northbound)
Fort Hamilton Parkway
New Utrecht Avenue
18th Avenue
20th Avenue
Bay Parkway
Kings Highway
Avenue U
86th Street
Up arrow  W 
(limited rush hours)
Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue
Up arrow
 D   F   <F>   Q 

Lines used by the "N" train and "W" train
Other services sharing tracks with the "N" train and "W" train
Unused lines, connections, or service patterns
Termini of services

Cross-platform interchange

Platforms on different levels

The W operates weekdays only except late nights between Ditmars Boulevard in Astoria, Queens and Whitehall Street in Lower Manhattan, making local stops along its entire route; limited rush hour service is extended beyond Whitehall Street to and from 86th Street in Gravesend, Brooklyn, making local stops in Brooklyn.[4] The W is internally staffed and scheduled as part of the N.[5][6]

Introduced on July 22, 2001, the W ran at all times on the BMT West End Line and BMT Fourth Avenue Line in Brooklyn to Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue across the Manhattan Bridge, running express on the Broadway Line. It was truncated in 2004 to its current service pattern, running local on the Broadway Line to Whitehall Street until June 25, 2010, when it was eliminated due to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA)'s financial crisis. The route was later reinstated on November 7, 2016, using its original emblem and 2004–2010 routing, as part of the updated service pattern related to the opening of the Second Avenue Subway.[6][7][8][9][10]

Service historyEdit


A W train of R68s leaving 39th Avenue
A W train of R68As leaving Broadway
A W train of R160s at 14th St-Union Square

The W was originally conceived as an extra Broadway Line local service running on the Astoria and Broadway lines to Whitehall Street in Manhattan. This service was essentially a variant of the N route, which in the 1970s and 1980s ran express on the Broadway Line between Forest Hills–71st Avenue in Queens and Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue in Brooklyn. At the time, some trains (until 1976 designated EE) ran local on Broadway and only traveled between Forest Hills and Whitehall Street. However, reconstruction of the Manhattan Bridge's subway tracks between 1986 and 2004 forced the N, which normally ran express on the Broadway Line and via the bridge, to run local via the Montague Street Tunnel. This service change precluded W local service from running as envisioned. The W bullet appeared on older roll signs as a yellow diamond bullet, while newer roll signs featured the modern round bullet. The W also appeared on the digital signs of the R44s and R46s with any route and destination combination that could be used for the Broadway Line.[11]

The W label was first used in 2001, when the two tracks on the Manhattan Bridge's northern side, which connected to the IND Sixth Avenue Line, were closed for repairs. This required the suspension of Sixth Avenue B service south of 34th Street–Herald Square as it used those tracks to travel to and from Brooklyn.[12] The W service replaced the B on the BMT West End Line and BMT Fourth Avenue Line in Brooklyn, ran on the BMT Broadway Line in Manhattan and BMT Astoria Line in Queens. It replicated the route of the Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit Corporation (BMT)'s old 3 route, later named the T, that operated from 1916 until 1967, when the B replaced it. The W also replicated the split in B service from 1986 to 1988, when the bridge's north tracks were first closed, although both halves of the route were labeled B.[13][14][15]


W service began July 22, 2001 in conjunction with the reopening of the south tracks of the Manhattan Bridge and the closure of the bridge's north tracks. Service began operating between Coney Island and Astoria-Ditmars Boulevard, Queens via the West End Local and Fourth Avenue Express in Brooklyn; the Manhattan Bridge south tracks; Broadway Express (switching to the local tracks to serve 49th Street) in Manhattan; and the 60th Street Tunnel and BMT Astoria Line in Queens. The W ran express on the Astoria Line during rush hours in the peak direction between 6 a.m. and 9 p.m., and local at all other times. Trains ran express to Manhattan between 6 a.m. and 1 p.m., and to Astoria from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.[16] Evening service terminated at 57th Street–Seventh Avenue in Manhattan (using the express tracks and bypassing 49th Street), while late night and weekend evening service operated as a shuttle within Brooklyn only, terminating at 36th Street during late nights and Atlantic Avenue–Pacific Street on weekends.[17]

After September 11, 2001, all Broadway Line service in Lower Manhattan was suspended due to extensive damage caused by the collapse of the World Trade Center. As a result, the entire N route was suspended, and W trains ran at all times between Ditmars Boulevard and Coney Island. It made all stops except in Brooklyn north of 36th Street. During late nights, it ran in two sections: between Ditmars Boulevard and 34th Street, skipping 49th Street in the northbound direction, and in Brooklyn between 36th Street and Coney Island. Normal service on both routes resumed on October 28, 2001.[18]

The Astoria express service was discontinued on January 15, 2002 because it was unpopular among Astoria residents. This change was approved by the MTA Board in December 2001. Express service was implemented on the Astoria Line in order to improve operations at the Ditmars Boulevard terminal, and because 43% of the line's riders boarded at express stations. Instead, the change yielded no operational benefits, and made local N trains overcrowded, and express W trains underutilized. N trains carried 1.9 times as many passengers as W trains in the morning, and 2.6 times as many in the evening. W express service had been suspended after the September 11 attacks to replace N service. Even after normal service resumed in October 2001, local W service was kept until November 19 on a trial basis. Analysis of the operating pattern found that the terminal could handle the all-local service pattern and that the ridership split between the N and W was more balanced.[19]

Around that time, evening service was extended from 57th Street to Astoria.[20]

On September 8, 2002, W service was extended to Astoria during late nights and weekends, running fully local via the Fourth Avenue and Broadway Lines and Montague Street Tunnel. This was because ongoing reconstruction of the Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue terminal left the W as the only train serving it.[11][21][22] This change also gave the West End Line late-night service to Manhattan for the first time.


When the Manhattan Bridge's north tracks were restored to service on February 22, 2004, the W was curtailed to its current service pattern, running weekdays only from 7:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. as an entirely local service between Astoria–Ditmars Boulevard and Whitehall Street–South Ferry, Lower Manhattan. The Brooklyn portion was replaced by the D, which was extended over the north side of the bridge and down the West End Line.[11][23][24][25][26][27] W service between Manhattan and Queens remained, because of increasing ridership on the BMT Astoria Line.[28] The first three W trains of the day entered service at 86th Street in Gravesend, Brooklyn and the last three trains of the night continued in service to Kings Highway. These trips ran local in Brooklyn via the Montague Street Tunnel, BMT Fourth Avenue and BMT Sea Beach lines.[29] On July 27, 2008, the W was extended to run until 11:00 p.m. in response to growth in the subway system's ridership.[30][31][32]

On March 24, 2010, the MTA announced the elimination of the W due to financial shortfalls. In its place, on weekdays, the N train ran local north of Canal Street while the Q train was extended from 57th Street–Seventh Avenue to Astoria–Ditmars Boulevard, running local north of 34th Street–Herald Square. The W ceased operation on Friday, June 25, 2010 with the last train bound for Astoria–Ditmars Boulevard leaving Whitehall Street–South Ferry at 10:50 p.m.[11][33]

2016 restorationEdit

In July 2015, the MTA announced it was considering restoring the W with its 2004–2010 service pattern once the first phase of the Second Avenue Subway opened, which would reroute the Q from the Astoria Line to 96th Street on Manhattan's Upper East Side. The W would replace the Q on the Astoria Line to maintain two services on the line weekdays.[34]

On May 23, 2016, the MTA announced it would restore the W.[35] Service was restored on November 7, 2016, running between 7:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m.[6] The Q was temporarily cut back to 57th Street–Seventh Avenue, allowing for a seamless extension to the Second Avenue Line, which opened on January 1, 2017.[36][7][8][9] Additionally, the N train again ran express in Manhattan on weekdays from 34th Street–Herald Square to Canal Street. The W's restoration meant there would be 20 fewer trips to and from Astoria per weekday as the W ran for a shorter time span each day than the Q did.[37] In June 2018, the MTA added service between 6:00 a.m. and 7:00 a.m., and between 11:00 p.m. and midnight in response to overcrowded N trains during those hours.[38]

As the N and W share the same fleet from the Coney Island Yard, a small number of W trains originate or terminate at 86th Street throughout the day.[39][40] These trains operate via the Montague Street Tunnel and local along the BMT Fourth Avenue Line and BMT Sea Beach Line as they did prior to 2010. In March 2020, the W was temporarily suspended due to lack of ridership and train crew availability caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,[41][42] though full service was restored in June.[43][44]


Service patternEdit

The following table shows the lines used by the W, with shaded boxes indicating the route at the specified times:[45]

Line From To Tracks Times
Week­days Rush hours
BMT Astoria Line (full line) Astoria–Ditmars Blvd Queensboro Plaza local    
60th Street Tunnel all
BMT Broadway Line (full line) Lexington Avenue/59th Street Canal Street local
City Hall Whitehall Street–South Ferry all
Montague Street Tunnel all   Limited service
BMT Fourth Avenue Line Court Street Jay Street–MetroTech all
DeKalb Avenue 59th Street/Fourth Avenue local
BMT Sea Beach Line Eighth Avenue 86th Street


For a more detailed station listing, see the articles on the lines listed above.[2]

Station service legend
  Stops all times
  Stops all times except late nights
  Stops weekdays only
  Stops rush hours in the peak direction only
  Station closed
  Stops rush hours only (limited service not noted on map)
Time period details
  Station is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act
  ↑ Station is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act
in the indicated direction only
  Elevator access to mezzanine only
  Stations   Subway transfers Connections and notes
Astoria Line
  Astoria–Ditmars Boulevard N  
  Astoria Boulevard   N   M60 Select Bus Service to LaGuardia Airport
  30th Avenue N  
  Broadway N  
  36th Avenue N  
  39th Avenue N  
  Queensboro Plaza N  
7   <7>  ​ (IRT Flushing Line)
Broadway Line
  Lexington Avenue/59th Street N  R  
4  5  6   <6>   (IRT Lexington Avenue Line at 59th Street)
Out-of-system transfer with MetroCard/OMNY:
F   <F>  ​​ N  Q  R   (63rd Street Lines at Lexington Avenue–63rd Street)
Roosevelt Island Tramway
  Fifth Avenue–59th Street N  R  
  57th Street–Seventh Avenue   N  Q  R  
  49th Street   ↑ N  R   Station is accessible in the northbound direction only.
  Times Square–42nd Street   N  Q  R  
1  2  3   (IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line)
7   <7>  ​ (IRT Flushing Line)
A  C  E   (IND Eighth Avenue Line at 42nd Street–Port Authority Bus Terminal)
S   (42nd Street Shuttle)
B  D  F   <F>  M   (IND Sixth Avenue Line at 42nd Street–Bryant Park, daytime only)
Port Authority Bus Terminal
M34A Select Bus Service
  34th Street–Herald Square   N  Q  R  
B  D  F   <F>  M   (IND Sixth Avenue Line)
M34 / M34A Select Bus Service
PATH at 33rd Street
Amtrak, LIRR, NJ Transit at Pennsylvania Station
  28th Street R  
  23rd Street R   M23 Select Bus Service
  14th Street–Union Square   N  Q  R  
L   (BMT Canarsie Line)
4  5  6   <6>   (IRT Lexington Avenue Line)
M14A / M14D Select Bus Service
  Eighth Street–New York University R  
  Prince Street R  
  Canal Street   N  Q  R  
6   <6>   (IRT Lexington Avenue Line)
J  Z   (BMT Nassau Street Line)
Some northbound rush hour trips begin at this station.
  City Hall R  
  Cortlandt Street   R  
2  3   (IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line at Park Place)
A  C   (IND Eighth Avenue Line at Chambers Street)
E   (IND Eighth Avenue Line at World Trade Center)
PATH at World Trade Center
  Rector Street R  
  Whitehall Street–South Ferry   R  
1   (IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line at South Ferry)
M15 Select Bus Service
Staten Island Ferry at Whitehall Terminal
Montague Street Branch (Limited rush hour service)
  Court Street   R  
2  3   (IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line at Borough Hall)
4  5   (IRT Eastern Parkway Line at Borough Hall)
  Jay Street–MetroTech   R  
A  C   F   <F>  ​ (IND Fulton Street and Culver Lines)
  DeKalb Avenue   B  N  Q  R  
Fourth Avenue Line
  Atlantic Avenue–Barclays Center   D   N   Q  R  
B  Q   (BMT Brighton Line)
2  3  4  5   (IRT Eastern Parkway Line)
LIRR Atlantic Branch at Atlantic Terminal
  Union Street N  R  
  Ninth Street N  R  
F  G   (IND Culver Line at Fourth Avenue)
  Prospect Avenue N  R  
  25th Street N  R  
  36th Street D   N   Q  R  
  45th Street N  R  
  53rd Street N  R  
  59th Street/Fourth Avenue   N  Q  R  
Sea Beach Line
  Eighth Avenue   ↑ N   Q   Station is ADA-accessible in the northbound direction only.
  Fort Hamilton Parkway N   Q  
  New Utrecht Avenue   N   Q  
D   (BMT West End Line at 62nd Street)
  18th Avenue N   Q  
  20th Avenue N   Q  
  Bay Parkway N   Q  
  Kings Highway N   Q   B82 Select Bus Service
  Avenue U N   Q  
  Gravesend–86th Street N   Q  


  1. ^ "Subdivision 'B' Car Assignments: Cars Required April 27, 2020" (PDF). The Bulletin. Electric Railroaders' Association. 63 (6): 14. June 2020. Retrieved June 1, 2020.
  2. ^ a b "W Subway Timetable, Effective November 8, 2020". Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Retrieved December 9, 2020.
  3. ^ Grynbaum, Michael M. (May 10, 2010). "Take the Tomato 2 Stops to the Sunflower". New York Times. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
  4. ^ Spivack, Caroline (January 10, 2017). "W-w-what!? W trains mysteriously appearing in Brooklyn". Brooklyn Paper. Retrieved April 18, 2017.
  5. ^ "BMT-IND Car Assignments - Nov 6, 2016". www.thejoekorner.com. Retrieved November 6, 2016.
  6. ^ a b c "GENERAL DISTRIBUTION - SUB-DIVISION B - TRAIN OPERATOR/CONDUCTOR - ROAD & NON-ROAD WORK PROGRAMS" (PDF). New York City Transit Authority. July 29, 2016. Retrieved August 19, 2016.
  7. ^ a b * "MTA | Press Release | NYC Transit | MTA Advances Work On Second Avenue Subway Service". www.mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  8. ^ a b Kabak, Benjamin. "Ahead of 2nd Ave. Subway opening, MTA officially set to restore W service to Astoria". Second Ave. Sagas. Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  9. ^ a b Martinez, Jose (February 19, 2016). "MTA Confirms W Train is Coming Back". TWC News NY1. Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  10. ^ Lam, Katherine (October 23, 2016). "MTA flyers spotted for W train's return in November". PIX11. Retrieved October 24, 2016.
  11. ^ a b c d Bolden, Eric. "NYCT Line by Line History". erictb.info. Retrieved October 29, 2016.
  12. ^ "New Subway Routes Take Effect Today". New York Times. July 22, 2001. Retrieved February 21, 2016.
  13. ^ "If You Ride These Subway Lines, You Know Something Drastic Has To Be Done". TheJoeKorNer.com. New York City Transit Authority. 1986. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
  14. ^ "System-Wide Changes In Subway Service Effective Sunday, December 11, 1988". Flickr. New York City Transit Authority. 1988. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
  15. ^ Johnson, Kirk (December 9, 1988). "Big Changes For Subways Are to Begin". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
  16. ^ "NYC Transit Subway Schedules". mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. November 11, 2001. Archived from the original on November 11, 2001. Retrieved February 21, 2016.
  17. ^ "Manhattan Bridge Service Changes B D Q Q W July 22, 2001 until 2004". Thejoekorner.com. New York City Transit. 2001. Retrieved October 29, 2016.
  18. ^ Korman, Joseph D. "Subway Line Names World Trade Center Terror - 9-11-2001". www.thejoekorner.com. Retrieved October 23, 2016.
  19. ^
  20. ^ "W Line Service Information". mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. July 28, 2002. Archived from the original on July 28, 2002. Retrieved October 29, 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  21. ^ "F N W Q Changes Sun, Sept 8, 2002 to Spring 2004 Reconstruction of Stillwell Avenue Terminal changes service in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens". The Subway Nut. New York City Transit. July 2002. Retrieved August 5, 2010.
  22. ^ "W Train Timetable" (PDF). mta.info. New York City Transit. Fall 2003. Archived from the original on December 4, 2003. Retrieved October 29, 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  23. ^ "February 2004 Subway Map" (PDF). mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. February 2004. Archived from the original on March 26, 2004. Retrieved November 8, 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  24. ^ "More Service on the Manhattan Bridge B D M N Q R W New Subway Service! February 22, 2004". The JoeKorNer. New York City Transit. 2003. Retrieved August 5, 2010.
  25. ^ "B D M N Q R W Weekday Service Manhattan Bridge Map" (PDF). mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. February 2004. Archived from the original on February 5, 2004. Retrieved September 18, 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  26. ^ "MTA NYC Transit Manhattan Bridge Information". mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. February 5, 2004. Archived from the original on February 5, 2004. Retrieved September 18, 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  27. ^ "Expanded Subway Service Starts Sunday Four-Track Manhattan Bridge Service Returns Bringing Route Changes, Increased Service". mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. February 20, 2004. Archived from the original on April 14, 2004. Retrieved November 8, 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  28. ^ "A Subway Map Remade, in Hopes of Matching Routes and Riders". The New York Times. February 20, 2004. Retrieved June 9, 2014.
  29. ^ A search using the MTA's trip planner using "Whitehall Street" and "Kings Highway" as stations and setting the time to the appropriate hour (6 am into Manhattan; 9 pm out of Manhattan) turned out results that showed the W as a possible travel option. Clicking the departure time also showed two additional times.
  30. ^ "W Train Timetable" (PDF). mta.info. New York City Transit. November 25, 2009. Archived from the original on June 2, 2010. Retrieved October 29, 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  31. ^ Compare:
    • "New York City Subway Map" (PDF). mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. April 2008. Archived from the original on September 13, 2008. Retrieved October 29, 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link) (W service ends at 9 PM)
    • (W service ends at 11 PM)
  32. ^ "MTA | Press Release | NYC Transit | Service Adjustments on BMW Lines". www.mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. July 24, 2008. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
  33. ^ "MTA | Press Release | NYC Transit | Major Subway Changes Set for Monday". www.mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. June 24, 2010. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
  34. ^ "MTA considers bringing back W train from Astoria to lower Manhattan". amNewYork. July 12, 2015. Retrieved July 15, 2015.
  35. ^ Venugopal, Nikhita (May 25, 2016). "W Train's Return Is Now Official With Approval From MTA Board". DNAinfo New York. Archived from the original on August 5, 2016. Retrieved May 26, 2016.
  36. ^ Slotnik, Daniel E.; Wolfe, Jonathan; Fitzsimmons, Emma G.; Palmer, Emily; Remnick, Noah (January 1, 2017). "Opening of Second Avenue Subway: Updates". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved January 1, 2017.
  37. ^ Evelly, Jeanmarie. "W Train Rollout Will Mean Fewer Trains Per Day in Astoria, MTA Says". DNAInfo. Archived from the original on November 6, 2016. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
  38. ^ Murray, Christian. "MTA to Increase Weekend Service on 7 train Starting June 2018 to Meet Increased Demand". Sunnyside Post. Retrieved July 14, 2018.
  39. ^ "W Line Returns to Queens". mta.info. Retrieved November 12, 2016.
  40. ^ Spivack, Caroline (January 10, 2017). "W-w-what!? W trains mysteriously appearing in Brooklyn". Brooklyn Daily. Retrieved January 17, 2017.
  41. ^ Guse, Clayton (March 24, 2020). "Coronavirus forces MTA to implement big cuts to NYC's mass transit". nydailynews.com. Retrieved June 9, 2020.
  42. ^ Martinez, Jose (April 28, 2020). "Subway Service Slowly Gets Back On Track As Transit Workers Return". The City. Retrieved April 29, 2020.
  43. ^ Bascome, Erik (June 2, 2020). "Full service on MTA buses, subways set to return by June 8". silive. Retrieved June 8, 2020.
  44. ^ Siff, Andrew (June 5, 2020). "MTA Resumes Regular Weekday Service; Overnight 4-Hour Closure Stays". NBC New York. Retrieved June 8, 2020.
  45. ^ "Subway Service Guide" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. September 2019. Retrieved September 22, 2019.

External linksEdit