Upon hearing of the death of Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin last week, music enthusiast and location manager LeRoy McCarthy corralled a street artist friend and got to work on a fitting sendoff–”Aretha,” stenciled in magenta sprayable chalk lettering above each sign that identified the Franklin Avenue subway station in Brooklyn. Curbed reports that McCarthy, who was responsible for efforts to name streets for Notorious B.I.G. in Clinton Hill, Phife Dawg in Queens and the Beastie Boys in the Lower East Side, among others, hopes to create a more permanent tribute. The plan is to create the word R-E-S-P-E-C-T in large black letters on a blank wall just south of Fulton Street on the west side of Franklin Avenue.
Image © 6sqft
Instead of airing grievances about the subway on Twitter, you will soon be able to complain to the boss of the system face-to-face. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced on Sunday that Andy Byford, president of NYC Transit, will host a series of town hall public meetings about the Fast Forward plan, the ambitious proposal to modernize the subway over the next decade. The first meeting will take place at York College in Queens on Tuesday, Aug. 21 from 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm.
Via jason smith on Flicker
Bad news for bus riders. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority will not expand select bus service over the next few years as originally planned in order to cut costs amid a looming financial crisis for the agency, the Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday. Mayor Bill de Blasio first announced last year a plan to expand the select, or express, bus routes by upgrading 21 new routes over the next decade. But the MTA said it can save $28 million through 2022 by postponing the program temporarily.
L train stop at Bedford; via Roshan Vyas on Flickr
The MTA announced on Saturday that the L train will not run between Manhattan and Brooklyn over 15 weekends. Between this coming weekend and mid-April, the L will only operate between Broadway Junction and Carnasie-Rockaway Parkway during specific weekends. As Gothamist reported, this “pre-shutdown shutdown” will prepare for the 15-month shutdown of the L-train scheduled to begin sometime in April.
Photo via Wiki Commons
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority on Monday morning began work on the N, R and D line tunnels running in Brooklyn from 36th Street to 59th Street, causing massive delays. But the agency never told rush-hour commuters, who checked the MTA’s website to find it labeled it as “good service” on the yellow lines. Only after about an hour of frustrated tweets directed at the MTA did the agency announce the long-term structural project, via Twitter.
Image by Ged Carroll via Flickr CC
Metropolitan Transportation Authority officials announced Wednesday it will stick with its plan to increase fares and tolls that net four percent in 2019 and 2021 as the agency faces budget deficits in the coming years, the Daily News reported. The MTA said it expects to lose roughly $376 million over the next four years, or $90 million per year, due to a drop in ridership. Between 2016 and 2017, there was a loss of 69 million rides on the city’s subway and buses. The fare hike would be the sixth since 2009 when the state legislature approved a plan that included increasing fares every other year.
Image: Todd Shaffer via Flickr.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the MTA has presented data showing that lower New York City mass transit use numbers matched up with an uptick in taxi and ride-hailing trips. Even as the city’s population grows, subway and bus ridership has been declining. New York City Transit Executive Vice President Tim Mulligan explained in a presentation Monday how dips in weekday subway ridership between 2016 and 2017 coincided with increased use of taxi and for-hire vehicles.
MTA to launch 14th Street Select Bus Service to help move 50K more daily riders during L train shutdown, Tue, July 24, 2018
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and the New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) have announced that Select Bus Service will be available to riders on 14th Street in Manhattan as of January 6, 2019 ahead of the planned April 2019 L train tunnel closure for repairs to due to damage from Hurricane Sandy. The M14 is expected to become the busiest bus route in the nation during the shutdown, with more than 50,000 additional daily riders expected to move above ground along 14th Street. According to NYC Transit President Andy Byford: “Launching Select Bus Service on 14th Street is a critical part of a multi-faceted service plan to keep thousands of customers moving safely and efficiently as they commute crosstown.”
Photo via rhythmicdiaspora on Flickr
Despite spending over $300 million on system repairs over the last year, the New York City subway is showing little improvement, with its on-time rate just around 65 percent during the weekday, the New York Times reported. Last summer, after a train derailed at 125th street and left 30 people injured, Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. And while the MTA and its chair, Joseph Lhota, unveiled an $800 million action plan to fix the subway, and new NYC Transit Chief Andy Byford later laid out an aggressive plan to modernize the system, the subway’s “summer of hell” seems far from over.
Via City Comptroller’s office
More than half of the 122 neighborhoods served by New York City’s subway system do not have a single accessible station, a new report by City Comptroller Scott Stringer found. And out of the 62 neighborhoods dubbed “ADA transit deserts,” 55 are in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens. In his report, “Service Denied,” Stringer details the gaps in accessibility for seniors and mobility-impaired New Yorkers and calls on the state legislature to create a new funding source dedicated to upgrades compliant with the American with Disabilities Act.