MIDTOWN, Manhattan (PIX11) — Long Island Rail Road commuters took to social media this week to share complaints about delays and overcrowding on trains following the launch of full service to Grand Central Madison.

Commuters expressed their frustrations on Twitter, tweeting photos of packed train cars during early morning rush hours. Riders’ reactions to the changes ranged from being fed up to mild criticism of the new schedule, which went into effect on Monday.

Erica Goodstein was sitting in a stairwell inside Grand Central Madison (there are very few seats in the new terminal) with her teenage daughter early on Thursday afternoon. She said that their situation represents a lot of what’s wrong — and right —about the changes to the railroad’s schedule since East Side access fully opened.

“To get to my office on Wall Street, it’s way worse,” said Goodstein, who commutes from Lawrence in Nassau County. “But to take my daughter shopping in Midtown, it’s so much better.”

She said that the former trip requires transfers and hassles, while the latter is direct and efficient. 

The MTA launched the new schedule change for all LIRR branches on Monday, with dozens of trains running to the new Grand Central Madison terminal on Manhattan’s East Side.

The schedule change has resulted in many commutes that had once been non-stop, now requiring a transfer. Many of those transfers occur at Jamaica Station in Queens. 

Goodstein knows that all too well, both inbound and outbound.

“Instead of being able to sit in my seat, and just fall asleep all the way home,” she said, “I have to switch at Jamaica or at Valley Stream, so it’s a little more complicated.”

Some other riders were more critical. 

“It’s been a nightmare negotiating your way,” said Karen Wolocz.

She said that she was still trying to figure out if it was more convenient for her to get to work in Midtown via Penn Station or Grand Central Madison. 

David Obwaya was also trying to figure out how to navigate Grand Central Madison on his way to catching an LIRR train to the Airtrain in Jamaica. He said that the station’s guidance wasn’t intuitive.

“I was confused,” he said and looked around at other people trying to check schedules and directions. “It looks like other people were confused … Maybe more accessibility would be nice.” 

The eight new tracks in the sprawling transit hub beneath Grand Central were expected to serve more than 160,000 commuters each day, increasing service levels by 41% and adding 274 trains to the daily schedule.

That’s still in process, as Assemblymember Gina Sillitti discovered. The Port Washington-based legislator distributed surveys to her LIRR-riding constituents on Thursday. 

“There was a lot of negative feelings,” she told PIX11 News about reactions she’d gotten from constituents about the new schedule.

It contrasted with the previous one, which had provided easy, relatively uncrowded access to the city, Sillitti said.  

“As of right now, this new schedule is not living up to that and we’ve just got to figure out a way to make it work,” the assemblymember said.

On Thursday afternoon, LIRR Interim President Catherine Rinaldi, who’s also president of Metro-North Railroad, said that she and the rest of LIRR management were aware of riders’ concerns and complaints. 

She said that the railroad had added cars to at least four trains to reduce overcrowding and that more changes were on the way to handle what is, at this point, approximately 70% of Manhattan-bound passengers headed to Penn Station and 30% traveling to Grand Central Madison. 

“What we’ve seen this week is crowding onto Penn trains,” Rinaldi said at a question-and-answer session at Grand Central Madison. “We’ve already started to address that by lengthening some of those trains, and you‘ll see a lot more of that next week,” she said. 

“So I think that beginning next week, some of the problems and issues we’ve been seeing in Jamaica will become much better.”