NYPIRG's Straphangers Campaign has just released its 14th Annual "State of the Subways Report Card" [PDF] and the best subway line in the system is, for the first time since the Report Card started in 1997, the J/Z! Though it doesn't have the most frequent scheduled midday service, the line is the most on time in the system, breaks down the least, often has seats and and is totally average when it comes to cleanliness (and its announcements are quite clear). On the other side of the coin? For the first time in the report's history, two subway lines tied for the dubious distinction of being the worst line in the system: Riders of the 2 and C, we feel for you.
Surprised the G wasn't at that bottom there? Blame the MTA. As part of its methodology for profiling subway lines, the Straphangers depend on data from the Authority and it has not been forthcoming with info on crowding on the Brooklyn/Queens line. But if you were wondering how it did otherwise? Badly! The G comes less often than most subway lines, is more likely to break down than the average line, is the least clean in the system and performs below average on in-car announcements. So yeah, not great.
Meanwhile, according to the report, there are lots and lots of disparities between the system's various lines. In other words everybody gets a little bit of the good and the bad. For example:
The M had the best record on delays caused by car mechanical failures: once every 843,598 miles. The C was worst, with a car breakdown rate fifteen times higher: every 54,838 miles.
Cleanliness: The C and E were the cleanest lines, with only 4% of cars having moderate or heavy dirt, while 13% of cars on the dirtiest lines — the G — had moderate or heavy dirt, a rate more than three times higher.
Chance of getting a seat: We rate a rider’s chance of getting a seat at the most congested point on the line. We found the best chance is on the 7, where riders had a 70% chance of getting a seat during rush hour at the most crowded point. The 2 ranked worst and was much more overcrowded, with riders having only a 28% chance of getting a seat.
Amount of scheduled service: The 6 line had the most scheduled service, with two-and-a-half minute intervals between trains during the morning and evening rush hours. The C ranked worst, with nine- or ten-minute intervals between trains all through the day.
Regularity of service: The J/Z line had the greatest regularity of service, arriving within 25% of its scheduled interval 85% of the time. The most irregular line is the 5, which performed with regularity only 66% of the time.
The whole report card is embedded below, but if you want to just cut to the chase and see how your line did, well, you can check out individual subway line profiles here.