Tag Archives: Q27

Changes coming to four Queens bus routes    


| editorial@queenscourier.com

BY ASHA MAHADEVAN

Starting this Sunday the MTA is making changes to four Queens bus routes in order to enhance service and help alleviate congestion.

The Q8 route, which runs between Jamaica and Spring Creek, Brooklyn will now end at a new bus terminal at Gateway Center II (Gateway Center North) in Spring Creek.

The Q17 and the Q27 routes will now end at 138th Street between 39th and 37th avenues in Flushing, instead of Main Street between 39th Avenue and Roosevelt Avenue. This change was made at the request of the community to help reduce congestion, according to the MTA.

The Q113 Local will be turned into the Q114 Limited in order to provide faster service to passengers traveling a long distance along Guy R. Brewer Boulevard in south Jamaica and Rochdale Village. The new Q114 route will make limited stops on the Boulevard, then all local stops along Brookville Boulevard and through Woodmere, Cedarhurst, Inwood, Lawrence and Far Rockaway. During overnight hours, it will make all local stops along Guy R. Brewer Boulevard.

No change will be made to the Q113 Limited’s route. It will continue its limited-stop service from Jamaica through Far Rockaway, and the Q111 will continue to make all local stops from Jamaica through Rosedale.

 

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MTA to move problematic buses away from Flushing church


| mchan@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Melissa Chan

Big wheels,  keep on turning — away from a historic Flushing church. 

The MTA will redirect five city bus routes from St. George’s Episcopal Church after local leaders and parishioners complained about idling buses and its drivers who relieve themselves on the side of the church.

“What was happening to our beautiful church was devastating,” said Assemblymember Ron Kim. “It’s very sad that when their congregation meets every week, they have to walk through all that pollution and smell.”

Drivers use the streets adjacent to the landmark church at 135-32 38th Ave. as a bus depot, Kim said, contaminating the block with noise, pollution and even urine at night.

Serving Flushing since 1702, the church is the only one in the city to be surrounded on three sides by city buses, said Kim and St. George’s Reverend Wilfredo Benitez.

“These buses have been a hardship on this parish for too long,” Benitez wrote to the MTA in February.

But come September, no city bus will travel along or stop on 38th Avenue, between Main and Prince streets, the MTA said.

The heavily-used Q17 and Q27, which currently have layovers there, will instead rest on 138th Street, between 39th and 37th avenues. And the Q19, Q50 and Q66 will idle near the municipal parking lot on 39th Avenue.

“The community requested the MTA study how to decrease the number of buses stopping near the church,” said MTA spokesperson Kevin Ortiz. “This reroute of Q17 and Q27 accomplishes that with minimal inconvenience to customers.”

Local leaders praised the adjustments but said they need to come sooner. Benitez also wants the Q20A, Q20B and Q44’s stops moved away from the front of the church.

“Waiting until Septembers means another summer of bus drivers urinating on the side of our buildings and the summer heat festering the stench,” he said. “All the other hardships already enumerated to the MTA in the past will remain in effect until then.”

The change is part of Kim’s new initiative, launched last November, to clean downtown Flushing.

Residents can click here or call Kim’s office at 718-939-0195 to suggest other blighted sites.

 

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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 buses fare well on annual survey


| editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Danielle Petrovich

The NYPIRG’s Straphangers Campaign and Transportation Alternatives just gave out two awards for the poorest bus service in the city, but only a few Queens buses were cited as slow or unreliable.

The first, called the “Pokey”award, is for the slowest route and determined by volunteers who ride 34 bus lines that are renowned for their high volume of riders and history of delayed rides.

This year there was a tie for first place—the M66 and M42 buses.  Both are crosstown Manhattan routes and had an average speed of 3.9 mph at noon on a weekday.

“The M66 and M42 are excruciatingly slow,” said Gene Russianoff, attorney for NYPIRG’s Straphangers Campaign. “[They] would lose a race to an amusement park bumper car — and be a lot less fun! A bumper car can go 4.3 miles per hour compared to the 3.9 miles of the Pokey award winning buses.”

In Queens, the Q58 was the 25th slowest bus in the city, at 7 mph, followed by the Q44 LTD at 9.5 mph and the Q27 at 9.9 mph.

Although the Q58 is faster than many other NYC buses, some Queens riders were unhappy with its service.

“I have to leave for work extra early just for the bus. It’s so slow; it takes forever to get to my stop,” said Flushing resident Tanya, a frequent passenger on the Q58.

“The bus is always so inconsistent. It never comes at the same times every day,” said Tom of Fresh Meadows.

The second award given out, the “Schleppie,” which measures how well buses keep to scheduled intervals, and is based off of official transit statistics, didn’t include any Queens buses.

First place went to the M4, which runs from Upper Manhattan to Penn Station on Fifth and Madison Avenues and Broadway. Nearly 30 percent of  its arrivals were bunched together or had big gaps in service. Close behind it were the M101/2/3, S78 and S74  lines, all having an unreliability rating over 20 percent.

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.