Getty Images/Spencer Platt
NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 23: People swipe their metro cards in the New York City subway on February 23, 2010 in New York, New York. The Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) has announced that they plan to cut more than 1,000 jobs, including up to 500 station agents. The MTA employs around 70,000 workers and is currently facing a $383 million budget gap. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
It looks to be cold and cruel winter for many F and G train riders in Brooklyn.
The MTA has unveiled plans to rebuild the Smith-9th St. and 4th Av-9th Street stations in Brooklyn, causing havoc for F and G train riders at those stations.
The first phase will begin on Monday, January 11th and is expected to finish in May. During the project, Manhattan-bound F and Queens-bound G trains will skip the 15th Street-Prospect Park and Ft. Hamilton Parkway stations.
There will also not be any F train service at Smith-9th Sts. Station.
The F and G trains will also stop on the express tracks of the Church Avenue and 7th Avenue stations, and a temporary platform accessed via the Coney Island-bound platform.
The plan is to rebuild and renew tracks, signals, and switches and to also renovate the two stations. The plan will require subways to skip various stations along the F and G lines throughout the spring, before a larger, more involved phase of the renovation process begins in May.
The project is just the first of a long-term plan to rehabilitate the historic Smith-9th Street Stations -- which is the highest subway station in the city. This will require the closing of the station in 2011 and 2012 .
"There will be some inconvenience to our customers," said Deidre Parker, an MTA spokesperson. "But this a project that really, really needs to get done."
Parker said the MTA will try to work on the project on off-hours and on weekends in an effort to "inconvenience the fewest amount of people."
A spokesperson for City Councilwoman Sara Gonzalez, who represents Park Slope, Red Hook, and other neighborhoods surrounding the train stations, said the community has been very involved with the rehabilitation plans.
They've been keeping us abreast every few years now with proposals and changes based on community input," said Michael Schweinsburg.
"The plan as it stands now has been out there since October."
Schweinsburg added that the MTA will increase bus service on the B61 and B57 buses, which run along 4th Avenue into Red Hook.
As work begins, customers are encouraged to visit www.mta.info for "Current Service Changes" and "Planned Service Changes." The MTA also suggest using tripplanner.mta.info to plan their rides, and to subscribe to free email or text message alerts at their website to stay up-to-date on subway and bus changes.