Weekend service disruptions on the L train have been very bad for business in Williamsburg, according to several merchants interviewed by the Daily News. And with more L train suspensions on the horizon, small business owners are begging the MTA to do the maintenance work overnight instead of on the weekends. "When I check my numbers, and I see a significant drop, that means the L train wasn’t working," Misha Anderson, co-founder of the Woodley & Bunny hair salon on North 10th Street, tells the News. "Don’t they know how these cuts impact North Brooklyn? In February, no one will want to walk here from the (J and M) trains on Broadway."

Anderson said she loses about $20,000 in sales each weekend the train doesn't stop at Bedford, which happened again last weekend to make-up from an earlier weekend that was cancelled due to weather, according to MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz. He tells us, "It was the only time it could be fit into a very busy and tight schedule of work done throughout the system. The next planned closures are one weekend in late February and one in mid-March." Ortiz also says:

It is always a challenge to find time to do critical maintenance on our 24/7 transit system. Typically, the work is done on weekends in order to minimize the number of customers that are impacted. We work hard to take community needs into consideration and recently announced a new program that is designed to limit impact by concentrating some construction in overnight periods during the week. Again, in this case, the work had to be done at this time, and will ensure safe and efficient service on the L train now and in the future.

The Canarsie L line service has been suspended to let workers take care of necessary track work and work on the Communication-Based Train Control (CBTC) system. There is a shuttle bus that carries passengers back and forth from Manhattan to Williamsburg and Bushwick when the train is down, but Bill Norton, the owner of discount clothing shop Peachfrog, tells the News the buses are too slow and confusing to non-New Yorkers. "We are a tourist mecca now," says Norton. "And we can’t get tourists when there are no trains."