Last week, the MTA indicated that it was scheduling the vital yet disruptive repairs to the Canarsie line for 2019, seven years after Sandy flooded the tunnel. But MTA officials said today that the agency still doesn’t know whether the L train shutdown will be perpetual or spread out on weekends.

“There’s a dialogue going on with stakeholders, so that would be elected officials, business owners, and their constituents and customers, to make sure first of all that we understand what we have to do and when we have to do it,” MTA Chairman Thomas Prendergast told reporters this morning after an MTA board meeting.

“We haven’t made up our mind yet on the way to go, because we need to have that level of engagement. And we have some months to be able to do so. By the time we award the contract later this year, we need to have good understanding of which one of those two general options it’s going to be.”

The MTA is holding its first of two meetings with community members next month, where riders will be able to weigh in over whether a partial shutdown with modified service (which might prolong repairs for several years) or a complete shutdown (where repairs would be completed faster) is preferable.

“We’re letting people know that there are pros and cons to each of those two alternatives, and we want to make sure we adequately weigh what those pros and cons are, and don’t make this decision in a vacuum,” Prendergast said.

Prendergast noted that the Request for Proposal (RFP) for repairing the tunnel was sent out this year to take advantage of millions in Sandy recovery funds from the federal government that the MTA stood to miss out on if they didn’t pick a contractor by the end of 2016.

Earlier, Prendergast answered a question regarding the looming M Train shutdown in Brooklyn and Queens set for summer 2017. The M Train repairs have to be done before the L Train tunnels can be addressed, and involves relocating several residents who live next to an aging viaduct that Prendergast said is “fast approaching the end of its useful life.”

“The interrelationship between the Canarsie L line and the M line, if you live in Brooklyn you know it. If one line is out, you use the other. We need to get that work done,” Prendergast said. “We’re going to do those repairs, get that work out of the way, so that there’s no doubt that the resiliency and reliability of the M line is there while we do the critical repair work on the Canarsie tube. It’s something we need to deal with now.”

Earlier during the meeting, the MTA board approved its 2015-2019 Capital Program, which was finally hammered out by the city and state to the tune of $29.5 billion.

Governor Cuomo has committed an additional $7.3 billion to the program to the $1 billion that was allocated last year, but declined to specify exactly where those funds would come from. Prendergast told skeptical board members that although the state legislature has discussed some proposals, it would be “premature or inappropriate to talk about [a funding plan] because nothing’s been landed on."