New York City

MTA Retiring 1960s-Era Subway Cars With 4 Final Trips

The first of four final trips starts Dec. 19

NBC Universal, Inc.

Some of the oldest subway cars in the game are preparing for retirement and the MTA is putting one of the 1960s-eta trains back in service one last time to commemorate the occasion.

The transit agency is bringing back one of the R-32s, nicknamed the Brightliners, for four weeks. The train will run for four Sundays starting Dec. 19 before coming to the end of its line.

After 58 years in service, the final Brightliner rides will run along the F, D and Q lines and the MTA has released its weekly schedule for enthusiasts eager to ride the train one last time.

“A significant amount of history goes along with these trains and we’re delighted that we are able to offer the opportunity to ride them one – or even a few – more times in their final days," New York City Transit Interim President Craig Cipriano said.

The train's final service on Jan. 9 will run on the Q line, which was the R-32's original route when it debuted back in 1964.

“While this celebration is ‘End of the Year, End of an Era!’, it is also a testament to the Transit Museum’s ongoing recovery effort and hopefully the start of the return of our beloved nostalgia rides," said Director of New York Transit Museum Concetta Bencivenga.

The R-32s earned their nickname because of their "washboard-like" stainless steel exteriors. The MTA says the trains were one of the first large fleets of mass-produced stainless-steel cars purchased by New York City Transit.

The Brightliners may also be recognizable to fans of cinema. The cars have been featured in several Hollywood blockbusters including "Bridge of Spies," "Spider-Man: Homecoming," and "Joker."

Retirement runs on Dec. 19, Dec. 26 & Jan. 2:

  • Departs 2nd Av Station on the  line at 10:00a.m., 12:00p.m., 2:00p.m., and 4:00p.m., making all express stops to 145th St Station on the D line  
  • Departs 145th St Station on the  line at 11:00a.m., 1:00p.m., 3:00p.m., and 5:00p.m., making all express stops to the 2nd Ave Station on the F line  

Final run schedule on Jan. 9:

  • Departs Brighton Beach on the Q line at 10:00a.m., 12:30pm, 3:00p.m., 5:30pm 96th St, making express stops on the Brighton and Broadway Lines, via the Manhattan Bridge  
  • Departs 96th St Station on the Q line at 11:00a.m., 1:30p.m., 4:00p.m., 6:30p.m. to Brighton Beach, making express stops on the Brighton and Broadway Lines, via the Manhattan Bridge  
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