nyc transit

MTA to Host First of Four L Train Open Houses Tonight (3/7)

The MTA is hosting the first of four open houses focused on the L train tonight (3/7) at Our Lady of Guadalupe St. Bernard at 328 W 14 St. in Manhattan from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

The other three open houses are also scheduled from 6-8 p.m.:

  • Wednesday, March 13: Williamsburg Northside School, 299 N 7th St.
  • Tuesday, March 19: Grand Street Campus High School, 850 Grand St.
  • Monday, April 8: 14th St Y, 344 E 14 St.

The L train is currently undergoing service disruptions on nights and weekends through March 18, and while a night and weekend repair schedule is expected to be implemented for approximately 15 to 18 months during repairs scheduled to start this spring, a final plan has yet to be approved. Continue reading

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“New L” aims to ease the Shutdown, Wants You to Know Their Service is #WorthIt

via The New L

A new Brooklyn-based company calling itself “The New L” will be rolling into town in April 2019, offering a “guaranteed and reliable luxurious daily commute.”

Luxurious? Daily? Commute? you may ask. Apparently, such an experience will entail “Luxury shuttles driven by professional chauffeurs,” as well as “chargers, Wi-Fi, and breakfast bars on board,” all for $155/month. The fee includes passage to Manhattan Monday-Friday, but no word on getting home, or what you’ll need to do on the weekend.  Continue reading

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What a Great Ride with City Reliquary’s Miss Subways Pageant 2017

 

Lisa Levy is crowned Miss Subways 2017! Photo by Megan Penmann
Lisa Levy is crowned Miss Subways 2017! Photo by Megan Penmann.

Last Thursday, mermaids, sword swallowers and oracles joined their fellow New Yorkers in the back garden at City Reliquary (370 Metropolitan Avenue) for the Miss Subways Pageant 2017. All thirteen contestants displayed their stunning talents, and even more exciting costumes, in hopes of being crowned Miss Subways 2017. Each contestant took to the stage to express love for the subterranean system that connects us all (when its not being held by the dispatcher). The night was alive with Transit Tarot, Subway Striptease, an ode to the G Train, and a whole lot of Razzle Dazzle.

SUZQ, regal representative of the N and W trains. Photo by Megan Penmann
SUZQ, regal representative of the N and W trains. Photo by Megan Penmann

The Reliquary invited community members to enter the competition, and New Yorkers from all over town turned out for the fun. To enter, each contestant had to write a short essay about their favorite subway line and why it “inspires/enrages/enchants.” There were representatives from myriad lines. An L Train Drag Queen competed against an F Train Oracle, a 6 Train Singer and a Q Train Mermaid. A panel of local civic heroes and celebrity judges including Janeane Garofalo, downtown art icon Reverend Jen Miller, NY1 reporter Roger Clark and writer, comedian, author and producer Baratunde R. Thurston ultimately crowned Lisa Levy Miss Subways 2017. Continue reading

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The New Waterfront Trolley: Is it Money Well-Spent?

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One reader responded to a recent post on the problems involved in building a bridge over Newtown Creek, suggesting that the article was too negative toward the project and that no infrastructure would ever be built if people only saw the inherent flaws — certainly a valid viewpoint.

However, before we begin a new multi-billion dollar project, we need to evaluate the time, expense and displacement it will create and decide if those billions of dollars might be better spent on subways or other existing forms of mass transportation. The city says that the streetcar will be ready in 2024, but critics feel this is a wildly optimistic timeframe.

John Orcutt, a streetcar critic and spokesman for Transit Center, a non-profit public transportation advocate group, stated, “The biggest concern is these kinds of transit projects haven’t performed well and have been difficult to implement.”

Washington D.C experienced years of delay and large cost overruns on a much smaller streetcar line, and the New York plan is far bigger than what any other American cities have recently built. The de Blasio administration envisions 30 stops over a 16-mile route and 60 streetcar vehicles. The very scope of the project almost ensures many more years of delay than Washington’s tiny system.

Another issue that many have with the streetcar is that in a city already short on parking, the rail line would eliminate hundreds of parking spots, so that drivers all along the route would be vehement enemies. It is hard to imagine City Council members backing a plan that would draw the ire of their driving constituents, especially if they never take the streetcar line.
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It is still not clear if the streetcar would be woven into the subway system or if it would be an independent system. There is also the huge question of whether the system would honor MetroCards. It is hard to imagine that many riders who already pay a lot for public transportation would shell out even more money for the tram if the streetcar fare costs extra. A limited ridership would mean that the billion-dollar cost of the streetcar cannot be justified.

There is one other problem with bridges: bureaucracy. Besides the time and expense of constructing a bridge, building spans today mandates conducting long and costly environmental impact studies that could take years and push back the 2024 date even further into the future. Let’s not even begin to contemplate the delays legal challenges to the light rail line would create.

Perhaps the more than $2 billion earmarked for the trolley could be better spent on a renovation of the inadequate G line. Certainly improvements to the G would have a greater impact on the local transportation situation in the near future. Clearly, the city needs to explain how the plan for the streetcar is more positive for Greenpoint than a subway overhaul.

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No Cars On McGuinness Blvd – A Virtual Reality with Streetmix

I’m just going to go out on a limb and say it. I hate cars.

See the above image? It’s my vision for McGuinness Blvd using an online App called StreetMix that I read about in this article on Hyperallergic.

Do you notice there are no cars in my design?

I think cars are stupid, especially in a city like New York, where so many people are crammed together, sharing what we all don’t have enough of  – space – especially open natural space. Continue reading

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G Train Planning Meeting Tues (11/27)

Wasn’t it such a pleasure to catch the G Train and not have to run a half a mile to the middle of the platform? Sadly those days are over, but the Riders Alliance, a group “dedicated to winning better transit by organizing transit riders into a powerful political constituency,” is having a G Train Planning meeting tomorrow Tuesday 11/27, 6:30-8pm @ El Puente Che Institute (289 Grand St) RSVP.

PS. I adore their logo!

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