Ridership increased at every station on the L train in 2013

Despite upgrades to the Canarsie line—such as countdown clocks and clean cars—it doesn’t get much love from its riders

Bushwick Ave–Aberdeen St

Bushwick Ave–Aberdeen St Photograph: Jonathan Aprea

Today the MTA releashed its ridership stats for 2013, including the fact that it was the year with the most straphangers since 1949: Annual subway ridership reached 1.708 billion. Can you guess which line saw the most growth in passengers? The perpetually crammed L train, of course.

According to the authority's release, ridership grew at every single station along the Canarsie line with about 6,000 more riders (5.3 percent) per weekday. That includes an 8.1 percent increase at the Bedford Ave station alone, where weekday passengers have more than doubled since 2007. The MTA added 98 weekly round-trips to the line since 2012, and since that's still not enough (as any Williamsburg or Bushwick denizen can attest), more will be added in June (hooray!).

The L is also the cleanest line, the only one that uses an advanced signaling system called communications-based train control, and the only lettered one with countdown clocks. Still, as The New York Times shrewdly reported, it doesn't get much love from its passengers; maybe that's due to its constant delays, arbitrary weekend shutdowns and, well, persistent overcrowding.

Here are some more key facts from the MTA's annual update:

- The next fastest-growing line is the G with a 4.7 percent increase in riders per weekday (about 2,200)
- The F saw 4.5 percent more riders per weekday (about 4,200)
- The busiest stations by borough were Atlantic Ave–Barclays Ctr (Brooklyn); 161st St–Yankee Stadium (Bronx); and Flushing–Main St (Queens)
- Ridership on the Rockaway A/S line in Queens was down 17.6 percent due to Sandy reconstruction

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Editor: Marley Lynch (@marleyasinbob)


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