The MTA will cut late night buses after the return of around-the-clock subway service, officials said Sunday.
Three bus routes — B99, Bx99 and M99 — which were created to assist riders during the overnight hours when subway service didn’t run, will stop operating after Wednesday morning, according to the MTA. Nighttime bus routes that officials added to 13 pre-existing routes also end after Wednesday.
Routes where buses were added overnight to increase frequency will continue to operate overnight on pre-pandemic schedules.
The city’s subway service resumed 24/7 operation back on May 17 after more than a year of nightly closures instituted by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to allow transit workers and cleaning crews to disinfect trains as stations as COVID ravaged New York City.
“When we temporarily halted subway overnight service during the height of the pandemic, we added significantly more bus service from 1-5 a.m., including new bus routes that mirrored subway routes,” MTA spokesperson Aaron Donovan said in a statement. “After evaluating bus ridership since 24/7 subway service resumed more than a month ago, it’s clear that customers who were using those routes are returning to subways, eliminating the need for the additional late night bus service mirroring the subway. Returning to pre-May 2020 schedules means New Yorkers still have access to 100% of the transit service they did before the pandemic forced changes overnight. We will continue to monitor demand and adjust service levels where appropriate.”
Bus ridership during the 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. shutdowns averaged around 13,794 riders each night last October. With subway service back 24/7, average nightly bus ridership dropped to 11,356 between May 24 and May 28, according to MTA data.
What you need to know before heading out:
Current bus service will operate overnight through 5 a.m. Wednesday, June 9, with the new overnight schedule taking effect beginning at 1 a.m. Thursday, June 10.
The following express and local bus routes currently have overnight service but will not have it starting June 10:
B99, Bx99 and M99 overnight-only routes will be discontinued.
Some routes where buses were added overnight to increase frequency will continue to operate overnight on pre-May 2020 schedules.