Pols want DOT to move on SBS in Harlem
Two northern Manhattan pols are trying to revive a city Department of Transportation plan for fast bus service on Harlem's 125th Street in Harlem.
In letters to DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan this month, Washington Heights State Sen. Adriano Espaillat and Councilwoman Melissa Mark-Viverito of East Harlem asked the agency to get the Select Bus Service project moving again, after shelving it last month amid community complaints.
"DOT should continue the work to bring SBS to this important corridor," Mark-Viverito wrote in the letter sent Monday. "Discontinuing this project is a huge disservice to my
The DOT and the MTA last month pulled the project when local community boards and elected officials rejected their proposal to bring an express bus with a lane and off-board payment system to Harlem's crowded commercial corridor. The SBS route would replace the slow-moving M60, the most crowded 125th Street bus with more than 9,600 daily riders.
"The longer this project is delayed, the more opportunities are missed to improve the daily lives of my constituents," Espaillat wrote in his Aug. 6 letter.
A sticking point for East Harlem Community Board 11 was an M35 bus stop on Lexington Avenue and 125th Street that brings in people from shelters at Wards Island. The board had wanted to move the stop away from a subway entrance and in front of a Pathmark--a move that Mark-Viverito supports.
Kevin Ortiz, an MTA spokesman said the agency is "willing to have a continued dialogue with community stakeholders" on improving bus transit and pedestrian safety on 125th Street. A DOT spokesperson said the agency received the letters and will respond.