New Yorkers will get their first chance to weigh in on Governor Kathy Hochul’s Interborough Express when the MTA holds a virtual town hall on the mass transit proposal between Brooklyn and Queens next month.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority will host the online forum to update the public on the latest about the vision and take questions for their transit experts on the evening of Thursday, May 19.
“We’ll host a virtual town hall meeting to provide the public information about the work that’s gone into the project to date, detail the process going forward, and take in input and questions,” said MTA Construction and Development President Jamie Torres-Springer during the agency’s monthly board meetings Monday, April 25.
Governor Hochul in January unveiled her proposal to add either a rail, light rail, or bus to 14 miles of underused freight rail tracks between the Brooklyn Army Terminal and Jackson Heights in Queens, connecting up to 17 existing subway stations along its path, pitching it as a way to better connect commuters outside of Manhattan.
Her first major transit initiative is a shortened version of a previous 24-mile proposal pushed by the Regional Plan Association since the 1990s, known as the Triboro RX, that would have run further north to Astoria, Randall’s Island, and up into the Bronx to Co-Op City.
Also known as the IBX, Hochul’s mass transit scheme could look like a blend of New York City’s subway cars and its commuter railroads like the Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North if transit planners opt for the rail option, MTA officials said last month.
MTA estimates it could serve up to 88,000 riders each weekday along its 40-minute journey.
The Authority plans to launch an official environmental review by the end of this year or early 2023.
Construction is likely still several years out as MTA’s Chairperson and CEO Janno Lieber said it would be part of the agency’s next five-year capital plan beginning in 2025 and take three-to-five years to complete.
The Interborough Express virtual town hall webinar will be on Thursday, May 19 at 6 p.m. Tune in at mta.zoom.us/u/keJkAoHsCN
The MTA encourages people who wish to speak or ask questions to register via the project website at new.mta.info/project/interborough-express