The L Train Shutdown
As I’m sure you’ve heard by now, The MTA has decided to shut down the L train for 15 months for repairs, starting in April of 2019. It will still run in Brooklyn. It just wont connect to Manhattan, which is a very big deal, considering that hundreds of thousands of people commute back and forth between Manhattan and Brooklyn every day on the L train.
I live in Williamsburg and I take the L train several times per day as I do business in both Manhattan and Brooklyn, so this topic is very important to me too.
So far, the MTA has come up with a number of solutions to deal with the impending shutdown.
As of right now, this includes dedicated bus lanes across the Williamsburg bridge, as well as High Occupancy Vehicle restrictions, which will only allow vehicles with three or more passengers on the bridge during rush hours.
There will also be increased service on the J,M,Z, and G trains, new bikes lanes, and new ferry routes. Since there will be no L train service along 14th Street between 1st and 8th avenues, there will be special bus-only lanes to take commuters back and forth.
So you may be wondering, How is the L train affecting the real estate market in Williamsburg? Are sales prices going to plummet? No! Thats not going to happen. At least not as a direct result of the L train shutdown.
I don’t see the effects being overly dramatic. Sure, some buyers are avoiding Williamsburg because of the L train shutdown and others are seeing this as an opportunity to try and get a better deal in an expensive neighborhood. If homeowners don’t need to sell, they are likely going to hold on to their investments until after service is restored, leaving those who do need to sell with less competition.
And Let’s not forget, Williamsburg is one of the most desirable places to live in the country. I mean really, what are we gonna to get trapped here in Paradise? We have everything here. Whole Foods, The Apple Store, we even have Joes Pizza! So, it’ll take a little longer to commute to Manhattan for a while. Im fine with it. In fact, I sold my apartment in Williamsburg last year and just purchased a new one here. Im not going anywhere!
Now, The rental market is a different story. Over the past several years, so many rental buildings have gone up in Williamsburg and the rental market here is overly saturated with inventory.
Landlords are finding it much more difficult to fill their vacant units and have been offering incentives such as free rent, in order to attract new tenants. If renters don’t want to deal with the more difficult commute, they can easily pick up and leave.
All that said The market is constantly changing and so are the details and information regarding the L train shutdown. If you would like to continue this discussion or if you would like any advice on buying or selling, feel free to reach out as always.
Im Scott Rubin. Your New York City Real Estate Broker. Thanks for reading!