The MTA is opening the potential floodgates of public feedback to further improve the Queens Bus Network Redesign after the initial release – while welcomed – came with plenty of criticism.
Two new dates have been added to the calendar of public workshops and outreach campaigns that will ultimately guide the agency in modernizing the anachronistic layout of bus routes and wait times in the county.
“The Queens bus redesign is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to completely redraw the bus network in ways we know will work better for everyone and for our customers to have a say in what bus service will look like in Queens,” Byford said in a Sunday announcement. “Queens customers know how important buses are and how they can be used to serve the neighborhoods better, which is why we absolutely need our customers’ help reimagining how public transit serves Queens.”
But activists sounded off with one main criticism: headway between buses would still mean lengthy wait times such as on the Q60 bus along Queens Boulevard, between Manhattan and Jamaica.
“There is lots to unpack and while I see some good changes and ideas some of this is rubbish. For instance the Q60, will retain awful headway times – 15 minutes during the day add 20 minutes on weekends is an invitation to people to use a car (their own or Uber),” Peter Beadle, an attorney in Forest Hills, said.
Transit advocate and LaGuardia Community College professor Joby Jacob said the plan was an improvement, but overall the MTA missed out on some perceived opportunities and will rely on the city Department of Transportation to make many of the improvements possible.
Thoughts after reading the Draft Queens Bus Redesign last night:
1. Some really good stuff in here.
2. Some headways remain terrible.
3. Some mistakes & missed opportunities.
3. MTA is dependent on #NYC_DOT to make 49 improvements with no timeline! https://t.co/1kUCYtK1jj pic.twitter.com/lbsphTUi7z
— Joby Jacob (@joby_jacob) December 31, 2019
According to the MTA, Queens’ bus routes go back to the days of the trolley and private bus companies that used to serve residents around the turn of the century. The spoke-and-wheel designs of routes sprawling to and from the hubs of Flushing, Jamaica and Long Island City “severely” limit the mobility of modern commuters, the authority said.
Outreach will take place in stations listed below where commuters will be invited to learn about the redesign and attend workshops, also listed below:
Monday, Jan. 13, 4-7 p.m.
Sutphin Blvd-Archer Av
Tuesday, Jan. 14, 6-9 a.m.
Wednesday, Jan. 15, 6-9 a.m.
Court Sq-23 St
Wednesday, Jan. 15, 7-8:30 p.m.
Southridge Building I, rumpus room
33-04 93rd St., Jackson Heights
Thursday, Jan. 16, 4-7 p.m.
Beach 54 St
Tuesday, Jan. 21, 6-8 p.m.
Greater Ridgewood Youth Council
59-03 Summerfield St., Ridgewood
Wednesday, Jan. 22, 6-8 p.m.
Queens Flushing Library
41-17 Main St., Flushing
Thursday, Jan. 23, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
SUNY Queens Educational Opportunity Center
158-29 Archer Ave., Jamaica
Tuesday, Jan. 28, 6-8 p.m.
Queens Borough Hall
120-55 Queens Blvd., Kew Gardens
Wednesday, Jan. 29, 6-8 p.m.
J.H.S. 202 Robert H. Goddard
138-30 Lafayette St., Ozone Park
Thursday, Jan. 30, 6-8 p.m.
Langston Hughes Library and Cultural Center
100-01 Northern Blvd., Corona
Tuesday, Feb. 4, 6-8 p.m.
Jacob Riis Settlement
10-25 41st Ave., Long Island City
Wednesday, Feb. 5, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
RISE/Rockaway Waterfront Alliance
58-03 Rockaway Beach Blvd., Far Rockaway
Thursday, Feb. 6, 7-8:30 p.m.
207 Beach 73rd St., Arverne