Home<New York<NYC Subway<
w
Astoria-Broadway Local
New York City Subway
W
Astoria-Broadway Local

on the SubwayNut
Stations
Service Weekdays from 6am to 11pm
·Astoria-Ditmars Blvd
·Astoria Blvd
·30 Avenue
·Broadway
·36 Avenue
·39 Av-Dutch Kills
·Queensboro Plaza
Queens
60 St Tunnel
Manhttan
·Lexington Av-59 St
·5 Av-59 St
·57 Street
·49 Street
·Times Sq-42 St
·34 St-Herald Sq
·28 Street
·23 Street
·14 St-Union Sq
·8 Street
·Prince Street
·Canal Street
·City Hall
·Cortlandt St
·Rector St
·Whitehall St-South Ferry
3 trains a day extended to,
2 trains a day start at
86 St-Gravesend

The W train is New York City’s newest labeled subway line that is operating today (V train service started later, after the W train in December 2001 but service ended in 2010 when it was combined with the M train). The line operates as a local short-turn variant of the N train between Astoria-Ditmars Blvd and Whitehall Street-South Ferry, via the Broadway and Astoria Local lines. Service operates weekdays only from approximately 6:00am to 11:00pm. The line is scheduled and crewed as part of the N train, with two W Uptown trains originating and three Downtown trains terminating at Gravesend-86 Street, these trains are signed as W trains and not N trains to make it clear to riders that they run via the Montague Street tunnel and 4 Avenue local. These trains are put-ins and take-outs from the Coney Island Yard where W trains are stored since the route of the W doesn’t serve a train yard. This service pattern is not depicted on subway maps or on station signs.

The current variation of the W train has operated between 2004 and 2010 and since 2016. Service was suspended in 2010 as a service cut in relation to the budget crisis with Q trains extended to Ditmars Blvd replacing the W, and N trains operating local north of Canal Street, there was no replacement service in Lower Manhattan, R trains provided the only service. W trains were restored on November 7, 2016, two months before the Second Avenue subway opened, to allow Q trains to resume terminating at 57 Street-7 Avenue with trains extended to 96 Street-2 Avenue when the extension opened on January 1, 2017, the restoration of the W nearly 2 months before the Second Avenue subway opened allowed the MTA to operate stimulated service before hand with trains terminating at 57 Street and then running without passengers up to 96 Street, an important phase of testing for a new subway extension. Service was also suspended due to a lack of train crew availability at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic from March through June 2020.

The W train first entered service on July 22, 2001 in conjunction with the reopening of the tracks on the south, Broadway side of the Manhattan Bridge for the first time since December 1988 along with the closure of the tracks on the northside of the Manhattan Bridge. Trains at first operated on Weekdays between Astoria-Ditmars Blvd and Coney Island via the Broadway Express tracks, Manhattan Bridge, 4th Avenue Express, and West End Local, becoming the southern section of the B train that now terminated at Herald Square. Trains even operated Express during the peak direction rush hour on the Astoria Line, running non-stop from Astoria Blvd to Queensboro Plaza. During Weekends and Late Nights a shuttle service ran only in Brooklyn between Pacific Street on weekends, 36 Street during late nights and Coney Island. The line was simply a new letter line directly replicating the former Yellow B train that operated on nearly an identical route (between Astoria and Coney Island during weekdays) and service pattern the previous time the northside of the Manhattan Bridge’s 6th Avenue line tracks were closed between 1986 and 1988.

Service changed within just two months after the September 11, 2001 attacks when the Broadway Line was damaged through lower Manhattan and lasted until October 28, 2001 when the tunnels reopened and the previous W service was restored. N and R service was suspended with W trains now operating at all times except late nights between Astoria-Ditmars Blvd and Coney Island. Late night service operated in two sections, between 34 Street-Herald Square, skipping 49 Street northbound and Astoria and the normal 36 Street to Coney Island Shuttle. Trains ran local along the Astoria Line and along the Broadway Line (express service remained on 4th Avenue, with J and M trains replacing the R and N respectively in Brooklyn serving local stops).

The next service change occurred on January 15, 2002 when all trains began operating local on the Astoria Line permanently (Express service wasn’t restored after 9/11 until November 19, 2001 on a trial basis to see if the switches before the Ditmars Blvd terminal could accommodate, frequent all local subway service). This was after Express service proved unpopular with rides and resulted in uneven loading of trains with overcrowded N trains, and quite empty W trains.

The W train became a much more important line from September 8, 2002 until both sides of the Manhattan bridge reopened on February 22, 2004 when the Coney Island-Stillwell terminal was closed for a complete reconstruction with the West End Line platform for the W train the only platform kept open for the duration of the construction. This meant the W train needed to be extended to Manhattan at all times to provide one-seat ride service to Coney Island. W trains began running between Astoria-Ditmars Blvd and Coney Island at all times, following the same Broadway-4th Avenue Express via the Manhattan Bridge service pattern during weekdays, but running local on Broadway, 4th Avenue and via the Montague Street tunnel during late nights and weekends, when N trains were cut-back to a Pacific Street to 86 Street-Gravesend shuttle service. On February 22, 2004 with the opening of the Northside of the Manhattan Bridge, D trains were extended to Coney Island via the West End Line providing the branch with 24 hour service to Manhattan, and the W began the same weekday service pattern that operates to this day.

For rolling stock, when the W was introduced in 2001 it primarily used R68 and R68A train cars. In 2004 after the Manhattan Bridge switch when the line became a less important part-time only route it began operating using older R40 Slant cars, these were notable because all trains said <W> because the regular (W) wasn’t on the R40 roll signs, eventually new roll signs were slowly introduced with the proper circle W. From 2007 to 2009 as the R40s were retired, modern R160 trains were introduced on the W. In 2019 the W began operating with older cars again with nearly all trains today using R46 cars (a few R160s and R68s are also assigned to the N/W’s shared fleet). The W lost its modern R160 because the R160s were needed on the F and R trains because of the installation and activation of CBTC automated train control on the Queens Blvd Line.

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Last Updated: November 28, 2021
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