Tag Archives: Q24

MTA to restore, expand five Queens bus routes


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

File photo

Starting this Sunday, the MTA will restore or expand more than a dozen bus routes, including five in Queens.

“About 50,000 customers will benefit from these service improvements that will restore some cuts made in 2010 while also filling gaps in service coverage in certain geographic areas or at certain times of day,” said the transit agency.

The bus service enhancements will take effect on four dates: January 6, January 7, January 20 and January 22.

Beginning this Sunday, in Queens, the Q24 will restore an extension from Broadway Junction to Bushwick Avenue via Broadway, the Q27 will provide new overnight service from Horace Harding Expressway to Cambria Heights via Springfield Boulevard and the Q36 will extend alternate trips from Jamaica Avenue to Little Neck via Little Neck Parkway, restoring weekday service along the former Q79 route.

On January 7, on weekdays only, the Q30 will provide a new branch to Queensborough Community College and the Q42 will restore midday service from Jamaica Center to St. Albans via Archer Avenue.

See the complete list of bus extensions and restorations.

Queens MTA riders call for more service restorations


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Recently rolled out MTA restorations drew praise from many, though some advocates and politicians said Queens riders were still left in the lurch.

Following deep 2010 slashes to service in the five boroughs, the MTA announced $29 million in restorations and new service to dozens of subway lines and bus routes accounting for approximately one-third of the original cuts. Five new bus routes were also added, the first in more than a decade.

In Queens, riders of the Q24, Q27, Q30, Q36, Q42 and Q76 will see lost service renewed or improved.

“Not a day goes by that I don’t think about how to improve both the quality and quantity of service for our riders, and I’m pleased that these investments will make a difference in the lives of our customers,” said MTA Chairman and CEO Joseph Lhota.

Not everyone was offering the MTA a pat on the back.

“You don’t get a gold star for returning what you took in the first place,” said Michael Murphy of Transportation Alternatives, an advocacy group that wants all cuts restored.

The cutbacks of two years ago were due in large part to cover a budget gap of nearly $900 million. New and resumed services being phased in beginning in October will be funded through increased ridership and savings.

More than 30 bus routes were eliminated throughout the city, with an additional 100 altered during the 2010 slashes.

In Queens, the “W” train and seven buses were eliminated, along with reduced service on more than a dozen routes.

“There’s no reason for one part of Queens to be left in the dark while the rest of the city sees enhancements and restorations,” said State Senator Michael Gianaris at an Astoria press conference outside a former “W” train station.

Most of the additions were in northeast and southeast Queens.

The MTA focused on areas where network coverage was lost, ample access to transportation was not provided, and looked at opportunities to serve new and growing communities, said agency spokesperson Kevin Ortiz.

Many other demands of Queens straphangers fell on deaf ears, especially regarding express buses.

Ali Fadil, a northeast Queens resident, collected hundreds of signatures calling for the QM20 to reach lower Manhattan, eliminating the need to transfer to the subway or travel to another neighborhood.

“There are many people in our area who get on the expressway and drive and drive to Fresh Meadows for the QM7 and QM8 for service to and from lower Manhattan, turning Fresh Meadows into a commuter parking lot where it can be very hard to find parking,” he said.

In southeast Queens, riders of the QM21 called for the bus to again run every 15 minutes as it had prior to 2010. Currently, the bus runs every half hour.

“This means if a bus doesn’t show for whatever reason, one can suffer an hour-long wait in order to begin his commute. This would render him late to his destination, which would likely be work,” said Tamisha Chevis of the Rochdale Village Commuters in Action.

“We should be in a situation of talking about new services to communities that have none,” said Murphy. “Instead we’re playing defensive and we’re trying to get back stuff that was taken away.”

 

MTA restores Queens bus routes


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of MTA

Certain Queens mass transit routes slashed during an MTA budget crunch have been restored — though others remain on the sideline.

The MTA announced investments to bus, subway and commuter rails throughout the city with many of the improvements going to restore lines that were cut during the agency’s 2010 fiscal crisis.

“Not a day goes by that I don’t think about how to improve both the quality and quantity of service for our riders, and I’m pleased that these investments will make a difference in the lives of our customers,” said MTA Chairman and CEO Joseph Lhota. “The MTA is the lifeblood of the New York region’s economy and a critical element in its environmental sustainability. With extended routes, less crowding and more frequent service, the MTA will help New York thrive.”

In Queens, riders of the Q24, Q27, Q30, Q36, Q42 and Q76 will see routes restored or improved.

Service changes for the Q76 will go into effect in October, the other lines will see the adjustments in January.

State Senator Michael Gianaris released a statement prior to the announcement calling for re-establishment of service in western Queens.

“Recent transit cuts have been a burden on western Queens residents, who rely heavily on mass transit to get to and from work every day,” Gianaris said. “While it is nice to hear the MTA speak of restorations, service improvements must include Queens, which has suffered as much as any borough due to recent cutbacks.”

He mentioned specifically the eliminated W line and QM22 bus which were not part of the restoration.

The investments will cost approximately $29 million per year. The agency said increased ridership and savings will pay for the plan.