EDITOR’S NOTE: This letter was originally submitted to New York City Transit president Andy Byford.
I am a retired social worker currently working as a musician. This means I have a schedule that is not 9-to-5. I am frequently home during the day, and head to Midtown for gigs in the evening. I also go to plays, concerts and other performances in the evening.
If I have — or am going to — a 7 p.m. show, I will take the 5 p.m., BxM2, or the 5:15 BxM1. If these schedules are abbreviated, I will not be able to take advantage of the city’s cultural activities, or get to gigs.
I also go to museums a lot. Many of them are along Museum Mile. Your proposal to change the route of the BxM2 would either make it impossible for me to get to (and get home from) these institutions, or make me have to transfer from local bus, to subway, to local bus. That is an extra fare.
I also have some difficulty standing. Having to stand and wait for all these subway trains and local buses would be a hardship for me. Considering the history of the 1 train being unavailable due to repairs, this is not a reliable alternative we can count on. Riverdale would become a two-tier transportation location, since everyone would need to take a bus to use the subway.
It also would add considerably to everyone’s travel time.
Using Metro-North is not an alternative on weekends since the Rail Link doesn’t run then. It’s also not useful if you are going to the west side of Manhattan.
I frequently use the 99th Street and Madison Avenue stop of the BxM2. There are always people getting on at that stop, many of whom either work at Mount Sinai, are patients there, or just find the stop convenient if they are on or near Madison.
I often come home late at night. I need to have an express bus to get me home quickly and safely.
Why would you deadhead buses downtown to turn around and do an uptown route, instead of using them to take passengers to Midtown? Ending the downtown buses at 3:30 or 4:30 p.m., would be awful. You would be destroying my lifestyle and hundreds of people who live in the northern Bronx.
You also would be directly contributing to a drop in property values when it becomes known that this is no longer a community that has safe, affordable and convenient transportation to Midtown.
I use these buses during the afternoon, and there are always passengers on them. Why don’t you do surveys to find out about express bus use, instead of making unwarranted assumptions?
Reducing express bus service also would have an impact on the large numbers of people who take advantage of the city’s cultural activities. If people can’t get there conveniently, they won’t spend money on Broadway shows, music and dance performances, and the museum offerings.
It also would increase the number of people driving or using car services and Ubers. This is in direct opposition to the mayor’s goal of reducing car traffic in the city.
I hope you will listen to us and not reduce service, but even expand it.