All 15 city councilmembers from Queens say they oppose the MTA’s draft plan to overhaul the borough’s bus network, unless significant changes are made to ensure better, more extensive service, particularly in public “transportation deserts.”
The entire Queens delegation issued a joint press release condemning the plan Thursday, citing criticism and concerns from constituents across the borough. Queens residents have specifically complained about a lack of express bus service and proposed route cuts in neighborhoods that do not have subway service, as well as alterations that would severe bus services in specific locations.
“We are deeply concerned about losing bus service on Little Neck Parkway and Braddock Avenue as well as throughout Glen Oaks,” said Northeast Queens Councilmember Barry Grodenchik, whose district does not include a subway line. “We need the bus redesign to provide better, faster, more expansive bus service.”
Councilmember Robert Holden called for an express service line in Maspeth, one of the neighborhoods he represents.
“In District 30, we only have access to two stops on one subway line, so my constituents rely heavily on the bus network,” said Holden, whose district includes the end of the M train line. “Maspeth is in desperate need of an express bus route, but this plan actually reduces the current express routes.
The Queens delegation called on the MTA to revise the plan and commit more money to making an equitable transit system in a borough home to more than 2.3 million residents.
“The goal of public transit should be to take New Yorkers from point A to point B expeditiously,” said Councilmember Adrienne Adams, who represents a swath of Southeast Queens. “The plan in its current form would make this goal unattainable for many residents of Queens especially commuters with limited public transit options.”
The agency hosted community forums on the bus plan in Ridgewood on Tuesday and Flushing on Wednesday. Six additional sessions will take place at 6 p.m. on the following dates:
Queens Educational Opportunity Center
15829 Archer Ave.
Queens Borough Hall
120-55 Queens Blvd
JHS 202 Robert H. Goddard
138-80 Lafayette St.
Langston Hughes Library and Cultural Center
100-01 Northern Blvd
Long Island City
Jacob Riis Settlement
1025 41 Ave
RISE/Rockaway Waterfront Alliance
58-03 Rockaway Beach Blvd.
Feb. 20 at 7 p.m.
Korean Community Services
203-05 32nd Ave.
Feb. 27 at 7 p.m.
Cross Island YMCA, 238-10 Hillside Ave.