mta

The Sea Train: Will Ferries Mean Smooth Sailing Through L-Pocalypse?

Williamsburg Bridge (photo: Julia Moak)

The MTA has seen protests in Brooklyn due to its laissez-faire relationship with the impending L-pocalypse. In response, they’ve promised to make community engagement a “central priority” as the March 2019 L train closure nears. Part of that community engagement was on display last week, when the MTA and the DOT appeared before Brooklyn Community Board 1 to offer a joint presentation to this neighborhood offering new information regarding their plans for alternate service during the transit shutdown. In a word: Ferries.

While the proposed direct ferry route between North Williamsburg and Stuyvesant Cove isn’t technically new (it was part of the MTA’s original L-pocalypse mitigation strategy ominously entitled Planning Ahead for the Crisis), the agency offered new details on the route at last week’s meeting. During the presentation, transit honchos noted that ferry service along the route would run 6:00am-12:00am Sunday through Thursday, and that service may be extended until 2:00 am on Friday and Saturday nights.  Continue reading

Category: News, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 0 Comments

Newtown Creek Flows all the way to Utah — The Hook-up (2/8)

Newtown Creek: The Art of Toxic Tides via Slug Magazine

The mighty waters of Newtown Creek will be in fine form this weekend, as lovebirds and sewage nerds turn out for Saturday’s tours of The Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant, but this week, they’ve taken the spotlight as far away as Utah.

While Utah might have the Great Salt Lake, but artist Kelly Larsen found his muse in Greenpoint, affixing a 9-foot canvas to the wall of the creek to record the ebb and flow of toxic tides.  Continue reading

Category: News, The Hook-Up | Tags: , , , , , | 0 Comments

L Train Shutdown Meeting TONIGHT (2/8)!

L Train Shutdown Meeting

The DOT is continuing its community outreach by holding meetings open to the public, so folks can ask questions, make comments and raise fists about the upcoming L train shutdown, aka L-Pocalypse, aka The End Times happening starting in April 2019. Tonight you can attend the third in the series of meetings, held at the Williamsburg Community Center (195 Graham Ave), from 5-8pm—you can feel free to arrive at any point during the meeting. Continue reading

Category: Community, News | Tags: , , , , , | 0 Comments

Brooklyn and A Queen — The Hook-up 1/26

Rev Yolanda Rocks the Pulpit at the Park Church Co-op
Rev Yolanda Rocks the Pulpit at the Park Church Co-op. Via Brooklyn Paper

This week, New Yorkers have been making their voices heard underground, underwater and in church.

On Sunday, Rev. Yolanda, a Drag Queen who leads an inter-faith congregation in Bay Ridge, brought Drag Queen Story Hour to the Park Church Co-op (129 Russell Street) to help children master the art of kindness and encourage them to embrace diversity.   Continue reading

Category: News, The Hook-Up | Tags: , , , , , , | 0 Comments

The L-Pocalypse is Nigh: Attend These Open House Meetings to Ask Honest Questions

L-Canarsie-Tunnel-Open-Houses-2018_WebO

As part of their plan to engage our extremely concerned local community, the MTA and the NY DOT will be holding an open house meeting on the L train shutdown next Wednesday, January 24th. Last month, the MTA released their plans for the 15-month shutdown of the L line (starting in 2019), to the chagrin of many residents—who felt that what they’ve got in store (more buses, bike lanes, among other things) is simply not enough to fulfill needs of the 200k+ riders who use the line to travel from Brooklyn to Manhattan every day.

Here are the details for the meeting if you wish to air your grievances or ask hard questions:
WHAT: Canarsie Tunnel Open House
WHEN: Weds, Jan 24, 5pm-8pm
WHERE: Progress High School | 850 Grand Street

Category: News | Tags: , , , , | 0 Comments

On the Struggle Bus: The MTA finally reveals its plans for L-Pocalypse

Alternate Service during L-Pocalypse via Free Williamsburg

As we reported earlier this week, the MTA has taken a glacial approach to coming up with an alternative transit plan for commuters who will be affected when L train service between Manhattan and Brooklyn shuts down for 15 months beginning in April 2019. But, lo and behold! It’s here! The MTA’s transit plan.

The big fix? Busses and bike lanes.

  • The MTA plans to create a dedicated “busway,” and upgrade Select Bus Service along 14th street.
  • While the DOT refuses to designate bus lanes on the Williamsburg Bridge, the outer-deck of the span will be a dedicated HOV3+ lanes at rush hour, catering to busses, trucks and vehicles making right turns.
  • Bike traffic is expected to double, so 13th will feature Manhattan’s first two-way protected crosstown bike lane.
  • There will be new pedestrian space around Union Square, and bike parking on University Place
  • Delancey Street will get a protected bike link to the Williamsburg Bridge.

But, the MTA estimates that 80% of the 225,000 riders who take the L between Manhattan and Brooklyn every day will seek alternate subway routes, and thereby turn to the G and J/M/Z trains (oy!).

  • Commuters can expect increased service on those lines, as well as higher capacity G and C trains.
  • There will also be free MetroCard transfers between the Broadway G and the Lorimer and Hewes JMZ trains.
  • Free transfers will also be available between the 3 train at Junius St. and the L at Livonia Avenue.
  • On the weekend, and overnight, the M will run to 96th Street/2nd Avenue.

Read on for information about new ferry services and street improvements!  Continue reading

Category: News | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The City is Still Without a Plan for L-pocalypse and North Brooklyn is Trying to Hold Leaders Accountable

L-Pocalypse Press Conference
Photo by Victoria Varney

When it comes to the Zombie Apocalypse, you’re officially covered. The Pentagon has been prepared to resist the undead menace since 2011, when the headquarters of United States strategic command compiled a “Counter-Zombie Dominance” plan. This is absolutely a real thing. The document even carries the disclaimer, “this plan was not actually designed as a joke,” but instead as “a useful and effective training tool.” Other useful and effective tools that may help you in planning for the Zombie Apocalypse include the Center for Disease Control’s Zombie Preparedness Campaign, and this handy list of the 25 Best Majors for Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse.

On the other hand, if you are concerned about the eminent L Train Shutdown, the 15-month transit closure planned to take effect in April 2019, when the the MTA will repair the Canarsie Tunnel, it seems you may have no such survival guides. According to The Village Voice, the City and the MTA have no plan in place for how they’ll get the L Train’s 200,000 daily riders between Manhattan and Brooklyn and back again.

On Tuesday, December 5th, North Brooklyn community activists led by The L Train Coalition and local politicians, held a press conference at The West BK (379 Union Avenue) calling on the MTA and DOT to meet with community representatives before the end of the year. A media release for the event said, “the community needs a report of the current plans for transportation remediation, a serious discussion around help for local businesses, and any street use changes proposed by the Department of Transportation. We will also call for a commitment by the responsible agencies and their contractors to meet with a community advisory board on a monthly basis starting in January 2018.” The coalition also invited community members to get involved in the campaign.  Continue reading

Category: Community, News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 0 Comments

Stopping Java Jerks and Making Transit Work — The Hook-up (12/1)

Newtown Creek Prints
Newtown Creek Prints! Via Huffington Post

Happy December, Everybody! Despite the glorious lights on Manhattan Avenue, it seems not everybody  is in the holiday spirit. In fact, there has been some gross nonsense going on around here: on November 21st, a man began masturbating outside The Lot Radio coffee shop (17 Nassau Avenue) while staring at a 20-year-old female employee. Then, he entered the shop and attempted to raid the cash register. This whole episode went down before noon, proving that it’s never to early to be a creep.

Unfortunately, the crime wave continued this week. On Tuesday, a Greenpoint woman was the victim of a violent robbery. The 63-year-old woman was punched in the face in the lobby her building; the assailant made off with her purse and cellphone. The NYPD asks the public’s help in identifying the perpetrators in both these crimes. If you have information about either case, call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS or for Spanish 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers Website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or texting their tips to 274637(CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

If the news seems a bit bleak right now, here’s something brightening: Greenpoint Artist Sto Len makes beautiful prints out of the polluted waters of Newtown Creek.   Continue reading

Category: News | Tags: , , , , , , | 0 Comments

Plan to Ease L-Pocolypse at Lorimer Street Calls for Opening Long-Shuttered Entrances

A shuttered staircase at the Lorimer Street Station. Via Change.Org
A shuttered staircase at the Lorimer Street Station. Via Change.Org

As L-Pocolypse looms, various civic groups, like Riders Alliance and the L Train Coalition, are looking for ways to help riders weather the shutdown, and improve New York’s transit system in the process. One proposal from Alan Minor, of Neighbors Allied for Good Growth, an organization that has been fighting on behalf of North Brooklyn for 20 years, urges the MTA to open the six closed staircases, and one closed entrance, at the Lorimer Street L/ Metropolitan G station.

According to WNYC, the MTA has 119 closed entrances throughout the system. The MTA shuttered these access points when the subway fell into disrepair in the 1970s, but as ridership climbs toward its post-war high of 6.9 million riders a day, inaccessible entrances only contribute to the crowding and delays that plague the system.  Minor told WNYC in 2015, “This is a major cause of subway delays, because you’re forcing people to enter at basically one or two access points,” which causes people to bunch up when they get on the train, and to bottleneck along the platform when they exit.

With the impending L closure, Minor’s plan takes on a new urgency. The Lorimer/Metropolitan Station served over 15,000 people per weekday in 2016. That’s over 5 Million riders per year. According to the MTA, Lorimer/Metropolitan ranks 101 out of 422 stations in the system when it comes to ridership, which makes the station busier than many stations in Manhattan and the outer boroughs. Add to this that the station will likely see a surge in riders switching from the L to the G during the shutdown.

The Station’s closed staircases and entrance are situated on either side of Union Avenue at the intersection of Hope and Powers Streets, and at the corner of Union Avenue and Grand Streets. These defunct entrances are just a few of the 10 closed entrances, and 27 closed staircases in North Brooklyn, along G, L, J, M and Z lines. Minor’s plan to reopen the shuttered access points calls for full ADA Accessibility in the station, to make commuting easier for New Yorkers during the shutdown and after.

According to Second Avenue Sagas, the MTA is looking into opening the closed entrances, but non-committal on when, or if, it will follow through on the plan. The MTA has this to say on the issue: “As part of our efforts to accommodate growing ridership, we are studying and evaluating closed access points throughout the subway system and we’re looking at every idea for how to provide alternate service to L customers during any potential shutdown.”

You can sign Minor’s petition to “Expand access[ibility] to, at and from the Lorimer St L-Metropolitan Av G station complex.” on Change.Org here

Category: Community, News | Tags: , , , , | 0 Comments

A Goat on the Lam, Explosions of Love and Brooklyn in Paradise — The Hook-up (10/5)

Goat on the Lam! via New York Daily News
Goat on the Lam! via New York Daily News

The psalm says the Lord is our shepherd, and nobody seemed to know it better this week than the abandoned billy goat who took shelter under the steps of the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of the Transfiguration on North 12th and Driggs. Officer Jamar Ferguson, newly-dubbed official goatherd of the 94th Precinct, corralled the freelance goat into a cage and named him “Lil’ Ferg.” Continue reading

Category: Community, News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 0 Comments