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LIRR rolls out extra service for Islanders games at Barclays

New York Islanders Blue Team forward Michael Dal

New York Islanders Blue Team forward Michael Dal Colle shoots on White Team goalie Anthony Pupplo during the third period of the Blue & White prospect scrimmage at Barclays Center on Wednesday, July 8, 2015. Photo Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

The Long Island Rail Road is adding extra service on its Brooklyn line to help Islanders fans follow their team to its new home.

The LIRR and Barclays Center Monday announced the enhanced service, which will include extra departures after Isles' home games at the arena, located just across the street from the railroad's Atlantic Terminal.

"Throughout the Islanders' relocation to Barclays Center, we have made it a priority to ensure that the team's fans on Long Island follow the team to Brooklyn," Barclays chief executive Brett Yormark said in a statement. "We are proud to partner with the LIRR to announce additional trains that will make that process easier and more convenient for our Long Island fans."

The enhanced service will include two additional eastbound trains to Babylon and Farmingdale, respectively, that will depart Atlantic Terminal 20 minutes after the end of Islanders weekday home games. Fans will change at Jamaica for all other branches.

For hockey fans heading to Barclays Center to attend weekday games, the LIRR is keeping its existing westbound schedule, which provides direct service on the Hempstead and Far Rockaway branches, and trains departing from Jamaica about every 15 minutes.

On weekends, the LIRR will add two pregame westbound trains into Brooklyn, as well as two postgame eastbound trains.

The LIRR closely analyzed ridership to and from Brooklyn during Barclays event nights to determine adequate service levels for Islanders home games, officials said.

"Barclays has been a whole new game for the LIRR. And with the Islanders now calling the arena home, ridership to and from Brooklyn will continue to increase and we will continue to adjust our service to meet the demand," LIRR president Patrick Nowakowski said.

Barclays officials said they will communicate the train times to fans using arena monitors and the center-hung scoreboard beginning with the Islanders' Oct. 9 home opener.

Barclays chief marketing officer Elisa Padilla noted that, already, 25 percent of ticket holders for the 2015-16 season are from Nassau or Suffolk. She expected that number to grow as Long Islanders discover that following their team by train is "relatively easy."

"One of the things we know from speaking to the [Long Island] fans is that transportation is a big obstacle for them," Padilla said. "They're afraid of the unknown. "


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