Eastbound trains will run nearly an hour later than normal on the Hempstead and Far Rockaway lines starting Friday, Sept. 28—timed to coincide with the first of eight sold-out Jay-Z concerts at the 18,000-seat arena across the street from the LIRR terminal on Flatbush Avenue.
Riders on the nine other LIRR lines will have to transfer at Jamaica. Drivers are urged to take the LIRR since parking is limited in the area.
“We are viewing the Barclays Center as a major new destination for our customers,” LIRR President Helena Williams said during a news conference Wednesday at the Mineola station. “We needed to come up with a good, solid service plan to meet this new demand.”
The last LIRR train out of Brooklyn is usually at 11:55 p.m. on weekends and weekdays. Trains will run through 12:41 a.m. when there are special events or concerts at the center.
The Barclays Center is also the new home of the Brooklyn Nets. Once the NBA season starts next month, fans can expect late night trains running every 15 to 20 minutes up until the usual time of 11:55 p.m.
Williams said the LIRR will do their best to accommodate games and concerts that run longer than expected. Riders who miss the last train can take the subway to Penn Station—the 2 or the 3 trains—to catch a later LIRR train, which Williams suggests for those planning to stay in the city after events at the area.
“Penn station has more robust service after that 12:41 time period, you can take a quick subway ride into Penn Station and then enjoy our regular overnight service from Penn,” Williams said.
On top of being the home of the Nets, the Barclays Center has booked a slew of big-name concerts, including Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Neil Diamond, Justin Beiber, Andrea Bocelli, Bob Dylan and Barbra Streisand.
Major college basketball, boxing, Disney on Ice, The Harlem Globetrotters, and Kellog’s Tour of Gymnastics Champions are just some of the events also scheduled.
“The Barclays Center will be the first new major sports and entertainment venue in New York City since 1968,” said Kate Bicknell, vice president of Forest City Ratner, which built the center. “In our first year, we will be having approximately 220 events.”