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M II A II R II K Jan 5, 2011 8:57 PM

NYC Tries 'Rapid' Buses in Bid to Cut Transit Costs


http://www.nytimes.com/gwire/2011/01...-co-71909.html

Quote:

The city's much-maligned bus system is getting a face-lift.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) surprised commuters on Manhattan's East Side last fall by launching shiny stretch coaches to replace old grimy buses on the route that links the island's southern tip to East Harlem. The new buses cruise 90 percent of the route in a new "bus only" lane marked by signs warning motorists that they face $115 fines for parking or driving in the path.

The M15 Select Bus Service (SBS) is New York City's version of "bus rapid transit," a Latin American innovation that's being copied around the world. The Manhattan route runs along 1st and 2nd avenues and was first seen as a stopgap measure until a new subway line could be completed, but the city's Department of Transportation says the service is likely here to stay.

As with bus rapid transit in Curitiba, Brazil, and Bogota, Colombia, New York's Select Bus requires passengers to pay prior to boarding to speed up the trip. With ticket in hand, riders can board through any door, instead of all lining up single file at the front to pay their fare one by one.

The buses themselves resemble light-rail trains, and they move in their own lanes. Federal grants are helping to pay for the improvements, even after MTA budget woes forced the agency to cut dozens of regular bus routes early last year.

Despite fits and starts, New Yorkers seem to be quickly taking to the new concept. Though no studies have been undertaken yet to see how things have improved on the M15 route, anecdotally, riders estimate the trip to be at least 50 percent faster than before.

"It's a lot faster," said Daniel Hernandez, a Brooklyn resident who rides the bus to work daily in Midtown Manhattan. "The best part is you can board through the back door. That speeds things up a lot."

..............

Scruffy Jan 12, 2011 3:14 AM

I rode this today from 14th street to 125th. I didn't time myself but it was much faster. Still not as fast as a subway train but it was a nice alternative since there aren't any trains that far east until the 2nd ave subway is completed some time around the apocalypse.

tdawg Jan 12, 2011 11:17 PM

I've ridden the M15 Select, too. Overall, it's a pretty fast, cool experience compared to the typical bus route. The MTA really needs to do something about getting crosstown, like on the M23 and 34.

NYC4Life Jan 14, 2011 1:45 PM

01/13/2011 10:42 PM
Subway Rider's "Rat" Awakening Caught On Tape
By: NY1 News

Quote:

Every subway riders' worst nightmare recently became a reality for one rider.

A fellow rider caught a rat on video crawling freely through a subway car on the Number 4 train, and posted the video on YouTube.

The rat then momentarily crawls up a sleeping man's body before being shooed away.

When reached for comment, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority says it routinely cleans station platforms and track areas, but also asks customers to dispose of their trash properly.


Video Link





Copyright © 2011 NY1 News. All rights reserved.

NYC4Life Jan 14, 2011 3:04 PM

WABC-TV NEW YORK

City council blizzard hearing questions MTA
Updated at 06:04 AM today

http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?se...ork&id=7897343

Quote:

NEW YORK (WABC) -- MTA officials will feel the heat Friday as the City Council opens another hearing into the transit mess during the holiday blizzard.

The City Council held a meeting earlier this week in which the Bloomberg administration came under fire. This time, it's the MTA's turn. Union leaders will be at the meeting to tell holiday blizzard horror stories. Many blame the MTA for not stepping up during the storm.

"It's too much snow, and you gotta wait for the bus," one New Yorker said. "It's mad bad out here, and they ain't clean the snow."

And transit riders get to revisit those experiences today, when the City Council transportation committee looks into MTA foul-ups and meltdowns during the storm.
The blizzard clobbered drivers and riders on every branch of mass transit. Buses were stranded, trapping passengers for hours, and subways seemed even worse.

Eyewitness News covered the A train episode in which people spent an entire night trapped on a freezing train in sight of a station.

"Everybody's stuck out here, even the buses," one resident said. "There's no bus to Far Rockaway, Rockaway Park. Nothing's working."

City Council members want to know why it took so long for the MTA to activate its emergency plan and rescue passengers.

For the commuter lines, Metro-North barely struggled through the storm. But the Long Island Rail Road suffered the worst service collapse in its history.

Trains stopped running, and it took days to restore real service. The MTA's own inspector general is reviewing how the agency prepared and responded to the storm. But the City Council wants these committee hearings to give it an outsider perspective. And commuters could give them one.

The hearing is set to start at 10 a.m.




(Copyright ©2011 WABC-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

Inkoumori Jan 15, 2011 6:37 AM

That's a nutty video of a rat inside a train! But I've been riding the subways day and night since 1999 and I have NEVER seen a rat inside a car. I've seen plenty of rats on the tracks and on the ends of the platform going for the garbage piled up or under the doors where they store the trash. Never in a train.

I think the MTA is doing an abysmal job in almost every respect (they abandoned the south bound kiosk at my station a few months ago and several people have been robbed). But I see many fewer rats than I used to see.

I have the suspicion someone put that rat on the train for the purpose of filming it. Maybe not, but the rat did not seem like it wanted to be there nor did it seem deranged. It just wanted out.

The only other explanation is that train was sitting at terminus and was not properly cleaned, and drove off with a rat stuck inside eating trash carelessly thrown away in the car by a human.

If you don't throw f'ing chicken bones on the floor, there is no reason a rat will enter (most NY'ers should understand my point).

mrnyc Jan 20, 2011 10:02 PM

they said on the news that the rat video may be a hoax. who knows?

M II A II R II K Jan 23, 2011 7:19 PM

A Light Rail Extension for Staten Island?


January 17th, 2011

By Yonah Freemark

http://www.thetransportpolitic.com/w...s/New-Logo.jpg

Read More: http://www.thetransportpolitic.com/2...staten-island/

Quote:

When it opened in 1931, the Bayonne Bridge was the longest steel arch span in the world. Today it remains an impressive work of infrastructure, its magnificent girders visible from throughout the New York metropolitan region. The Port Authority-controlled link, which allows commuters to get to and from Staten Island and New Jersey, is an important connection in the regional road network. With cargo ships getting bigger and bigger, however, the bridge has become an impediment: Its roadway hangs too low to allow for the easy passage of new Panamax-class ships readied for an expanded Panama Canal now under construction. Without clearing the way through the Kill Van Kull — the waterway over which the bridge runs — the Port of Newark will have trouble accommodating more commerce. For the region’s continued economic strength, that could be a major problem.

Thus the Port Authority has begun studying options for its replacement; right on cue, transit advocates have stepped in, arguing that the new structure could allow for better transit between the Island and the mainland. The major possibilities include lanes for bus rapid transit or an expansion of the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail Line, which will be extending a few blocks south to 8th Street in Bayonne on January 31st. Trains could cross the new bridge, then potentially run south towards the West Shore Expressway, in whose median a 14-mile light rail line has previously been proposed. This would ensure rail transit operations on both sides of the island (the eastern half is already served by the Staten Island Railway). Running the line along the North Shore, where a 5-mile abandoned rail right-of-way is ready to be reused, is also a possibility.

The Hudson-Bergen light rail line currently runs north to Tonnelle Avenue in North Bergen, via the “Gold Coast” business centers in Jersey City and Hoboken where thousands of jobs have been created over the past decade. Plans to extend the route northwest to the Meadowlands, southwest to the Hackensack River, and north to Tenafly are also afoot. The light rail line is destined to serve an increasingly important role as a north-south connector on the west side of the Hudson River. But just how useful would an expansion into Staten Island be?

.....



http://www.thetransportpolitic.com/w...d-Main-Map.jpg




http://www.thetransportpolitic.com/w...All-Island.jpg




http://www.thetransportpolitic.com/w...-Locations.jpg

Nexis4Jersey Jan 24, 2011 1:25 AM

Sigh , Yonah has be getting slopping with his maps....he keeps leaving out key plans in his maps. The North shore line will extend into Elizabeth and the SIR will extend over to Perth Amboy. For the most part hes good with his maps , but leaving stuff out like this annoys me.

orulz Jan 24, 2011 2:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nexis4Jersey (Post 5136971)
Sigh , Yonah has be getting slopping with his maps....he keeps leaving out key plans in his maps. The North shore line will extend into Elizabeth and the SIR will extend over to Perth Amboy. For the most part hes good with his maps , but leaving stuff out like this annoys me.

What plan calls for this to happen? To me this seems like it would be extremely expensive (particularly the Perth Amboy SIR extension) for something that would be a low priority. Why would somebody ride the SIR from Perth Amboy when they could just hop on a NJT train? I suppose if they had a destination in Staten Island it would make sense, but that's gotta be a pretty small market...

volguus zildrohar Jan 24, 2011 5:03 AM

Hey, I was just wondering if anyone could tell me the logic behind MTA eliminating the FunPasses? I was in town last weekend and was dismayed to discover that they were no longer available (in addition to learning that the fares had now gone up to $2.25). After doing the math, the closest replacement to the FunPass came out to equal five trips for the price of four - I suppose MTA figures the average tourist isn't riding the subway much more than that in a day. Of course, it does leave NYC without a dedicated one-day pass for tourists and the like, simply a discount regular MetroCard. What was their reasoning?

dchan Jan 24, 2011 5:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by volguus zildrohar (Post 5137150)
Hey, I was just wondering if anyone could tell me the logic behind MTA eliminating the FunPasses? I was in town last weekend and was dismayed to discover that they were no longer available (in addition to learning that the fares had now gone up to $2.25). After doing the math, the closest replacement to the FunPass came out to equal five trips for the price of four - I suppose MTA figures the average tourist isn't riding the subway much more than that in a day. Of course, it does leave NYC without a dedicated one-day pass for tourists and the like, simply a discount regular MetroCard. What was their reasoning?

Actually, fares have been $2.25 for a while - the fare hikes only changed the bonus you got back from each purchase (from 10% down to 7%).

My guess of the reason behind demise of the FunPass: for most cities, the one day unlimited card partially serves as a tool to attract tourists who may otherwise be apprehensive about visiting the city because of the lack of decent transportation. The transit networks in those cities might not be the best, but at least the tourists don't need to spend a lot for their transportation needs, as they would for rental cars. In addition, the transit networks would most likely stop at the key tourist destinations.

The MTA probably believed that getting rid of the FunPass wasn't going to be a make-or-break issue for tourists, who won't need a financial transportation incentive as a reason to visit NYC. Tourists will always come to NYC no matter what. So the MTA figured that they might as well get as many people to use the regular-fare Metrocards instead, since they receive the greatest per-fare revenue from those. They also got rid of the 14-day Metrocard as well, probably because nobody actually bought those.

I can say for certain that they chased me away from buying monthly Metrocards, which have gone up from $89 to $104.

Nexis4Jersey Jan 24, 2011 9:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by orulz (Post 5137012)
What plan calls for this to happen? To me this seems like it would be extremely expensive (particularly the Perth Amboy SIR extension) for something that would be a low priority. Why would somebody ride the SIR from Perth Amboy when they could just hop on a NJT train? I suppose if they had a destination in Staten Island it would make sense, but that's gotta be a pretty small market...

I saw it in the Borough's office or building.... Theres a huge job hub on the Jersey Hub , hench why there extending the NS into Elizabeth. Woodbridge and Edison are huge job hubs in NJ , it would actually go to Bound Brook and intersect 2 NJT lines.

NYC4Life Feb 7, 2011 5:56 PM

UPDATED 11:40 AM
Alternate-Side Parking Rules Back In Effect
By: NY1 News

http://www.ny1.com/content/top_stori...back-in-effect

Quote:

For the first time since January 20th, alternate-side parking regulations are back in effect.

Tickets are being handed out today to violators.

If you waited to dig out your car, Mother Nature helped out a bit over the weekend, as milder temperatures melted some of the snow and ice.

But as many drivers know, it's not just the digging out that poses a problem, it's finding a place to put the car once you get it out.

"It's a big problem because the snow is still here and you can't go anywhere," said one driver. "It's difficult because we have to get into work and we lose time. I got stuck behind a sanitation truck and it's murder. At least 25 minutes of going around, trying to find a spot."

"It should be suspended for awhile because there's no space to find parking," said another.

"It's ridiculous around here. To get a spot, it takes me an hour," said a third.

There's another challenge for drivers who make it out of their spots – potholes. The Department of Transportation says 40 crews are working to fill 2,000 potholes a day.




© 1999-2011 NY1 News and Time Warner Cable Inc. All Rights Reserved.

NYC4Life Feb 7, 2011 6:07 PM

9:44 AM
Traffic Fatalities Remain Low In 2010
By: NY1 News

http://www.ny1.com/content/top_stori...in-low-in-2010

http://img703.imageshack.us/img703/8168/97090983.jpg

Quote:

Transportation officials are touting another low total of traffic fatalities in the city.

According to the Department of Transportation, there were 269 traffic fatalities recorded in the city last year. While it’s a slight increase from 2009, it still makes 2010 the second-safest year on record to be driving, walking or biking in New York.

DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan is crediting improvements to street design – including islands on wider avenues.

Bike-related crash deaths rose last year to 18 from 12 the year before.

The city is making changes to further reduce traffic deaths including installing countdown clocks at intersections and reducing the speed limit in some areas.




© 1999-2011 NY1 News and Time Warner Cable Inc. All Rights Reserved.

NYC4Life Feb 7, 2011 6:10 PM

9:50 AM
Details Set To Be Released For New Proposal To Build Trans-Hudson Rail Line
By: NY1 News

Quote:

More details are expected to be released today about a new proposal to build a rail tunnel from New Jersey to Manhattan.

This time, Amtrak is reportedly along for the ride.

The plan is being proposed by New Jersey Senators Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez. It follows New Jersey Governor Chris Christie's decision to scrap plans for a similar trans-Hudson rail tunnel because he said cost overruns had made it too expensive.

It's not yet clear how this new tunnel would be paid for, but the Obama administration has made expanding high-speed rail service a priority.

New York City is also exploring the feasibility of extending the Number 7 train into New Jersey.



© 1999-2011 NY1 News and Time Warner Cable Inc. All Rights Reserved.

NYC4Life Feb 7, 2011 6:12 PM

WABC-TV NEW YORK

Metro-North New Haven line reduces schedule
Updated at 12:19 PM today

http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?se...fic&id=7936817

Quote:

NEW YORK -- Metro-North railroad is now using a reduced winter schedule on its New Haven line due to weather-related equipment shortages.

The line has been hit hard by the repeated snowstorms in the New York metropolitan area.

The railroad said previously that snow and extreme cold had left about 40 percent of its New Haven line cars out of service.

Almost 70 percent of its electric fleet is over 40 years old.
The reduced schedule is in effect through March 4. It means that weekday morning and evening peak service will be reduced about 10 percent.

Metro-North says it has been working round-the-clock to repair train cars.

Schedules are available at ticket offices and on the Metro-North web site.

Online: MTA.info



Copyright ©2011 ABC Inc., WABC-TV/DT New York, NY. All Rights Reserved.

electricron Feb 7, 2011 6:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NYC4Life (Post 5154888)
Metro-North New Haven line reduces schedule
http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?se...fic&id=7936817

Makes one wonder if NJT's operating scheme is more correct than MTA's? Meaning eliminating most EMU trains in favor of trailer railcars powered by diesel or electric locomotives. It seems NJT has had an easier time keeping their trains operating, although not necessarily on time, but actually running on the tracks.

Nexis4Jersey Feb 7, 2011 7:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by electricron (Post 5154951)
Makes one wonder if NJT's operating scheme is more correct than MTA's? Meaning eliminating most EMU trains in favor of trailer railcars powered by diesel or electric locomotives. It seems NJT has had an easier time keeping their trains operating, although not necessarily on time, but actually running on the tracks.

No , not really ...they break down just as much...not in the winter. Our problem is the summer heat , the MTA handles that better....

KVNBKLYN Feb 17, 2011 1:55 AM

Here's a recently released rendering of the interior of the new 7 extension station:

http://www.capitalnewyork.com/files/a-jose-no7_0.png

http://www.capitalnewyork.com/articl...om-improvement


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