Trying to get from some parts of Manhattan to the PATH system can be difficult late at nite, and especially if you rely upon the V train, which stops running at unpredictable times. It's supposed to run until midnite, but seems not to. Does 'midnite' mean the last train leaves the terminals at either end of the route at midnite? or that no station on that line will be served past midnite, so the actual last train leaves much before midnite? And does the MTA even respect its own schedule? I have watched downtown E train after E train run thru the Lexington Avenue station from about 11:10pm to almost midnite, with nary a V. I finally boarded the E to follow the directions given for "late nite": take the E to Seventh Avenue and transfér to the D. But the D runs only once a half hour, and if you just missed it, you've got a long wait. Tho the PATH runs all nite, it too runs only once a half hour after 11pm, so if you just miss that too, you are in for a very long and very unpleasant commute, especially since the stations are not air-conditioned and there is pretty much no place to sit.
Worse, late at nite you can never know which track to transfer to, or even which station to transfer at
, within the PATH system, from the 33rd Street train to the World Trade Center train to get to Newark. The train that ordinarily stops across the platform at Journal Square might still stop there. Then again, you might have to go up the stairs and across to Track 4, and make haste or you can miss the train and have to wait a half hour for the next one. Even worse than that, the transfer point might be arbitrarily reset to the Grove Street station, not Journal Square, and the public-address system in many cars thru which an announcement to that effect is made does not work. Last nite I couldn't hear some announcement on the car I was on, so asked people near me if they heard. They didn't hear clearly either because the PA system in that car was definitely not working, which I confirmed with them. When I then told them that PATH assured me that the PA system is checked every day, they laffed! But it's really not at all funny that the PATH system's executives send out dozens of cars with nonworking PA systems.
The PATH is abusively and stupidly run, so you have to be very wary when taking it late at nite if you need to make a connection to get to Newark (or Harrison, just short of Newark).
I have found solutions for the MTA-PATH connection problem, but only this past week, after struggling with the various connections I need to make, in all their permutations, during about 12 weeks of commuting. I've tried bus to train to subway; bus to bus to Port Authority to subway; bus to PATH to subway; and the reverse trip of all those, different buses, different trains. Tho it's very good that living in Newark presents one with so many alternatives, finding the best for your particular situation can be very complicated and time-consuming. The New York City subway interconnections with NJ Transit, the Port Authority Bus Terminal, and PATH alone take considerable analysis. I lived in Manhattan for 35 years, but the last 25 of them I walked to work, so forgot a lot about the NYC subway system. I'm gradually remembering.
The V goes from Queens thru the East Side and then down Avenue of the Americas ("Sixth Avenue"), west of Fifth. It connects with the PATH at several points, so one's first inclination is thus to take the V. But if the V doesn't come, then what? Do NOT take the E to the D unless you are sure of making an expeditious connection. Take the E (1) to 34th Street and walk to the PATH 33rd Street station from Eighth Avenue; or (2) to West 4th Street and walk to the 9th Street PATH station a few blocks away; or (3) all the way to the World Trade Center station in Downtown Manhattan and take the WTC PATH train direct to Newark without having to transfer within the PATH system at all. (If you prefer, once you're on the E and headed for Eighth Avenue anyway, you can just get off at 34th Street and take an NJ Transit train to Newark instead, tho it will cost more, and the trains are much less frequent.)
Perhaps long-time commuters knew all this, but I sure didn't, so hope it helps others, especially people who don't travel into Manhattan often.
Today's foto is of the roof of Newark Penn Station and the big, heavy, ugly railroad bridge that carries NJ Transit, PATH, and Amtrak trains across the Passaic toward New York, which you can see in the background. The bridge would look much better if somebody painted the darn thing some striking color, like the Golden Gate Bridge's rust-red. Or gold. Royal blue. Something.
The highrise office complex to the right is Penn Plaza, two interconnected towers of differing heights. NJ Transit and Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield are both headquartered in Penn Plaza.Sad Note:
Jack Warden, a widely known character actor born in Newark
, died Wenesday. I hadn't known he was born in Newark. Had you?
The Newarkology website's walking tour of the Weequahic district
is scheduled for next Sunday, the 30th. Jeffrey Bennett, our guide, tells me that the tour will be listed in the Star-Ledger
before then. I'll be interested to see how many people want to walk the historic streets of Newark with us. But I've got to get at least one digital camera working in a hurry.