Tuesday, July 27, 2010

New Van Service Replaces Busline

Starting on August 16th, 2010 the old B23 bus line servicing Borough Park, Kensington, and Flatbush, will be discarded in favor of a pilot commuter van service.

The New York Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) announced the start of the Group Ride Vehicle Pilot Program, and are hoping that its success will lead to expanded service.

Other bus lines which will be replaced by the new service are the B39 and B71 in Brooklyn, and in Queens the Q74 and Q79.

The B23 carried 1500 daily weekday customers and 1240 daily weekend riders until it was cut to help get the MTA budget deficit of $800 million under control. Unfortunately without the B23 commuters were left stranded with no way to get to work, school and other places. Alternative routes commuters were forced to take added an average of 15 minutes to each person’s commute time.

"Throughout the last few months, I have heard from many constituents who relied on the B23 to get to work, to family, or even school. It’s been very difficult for commuters who relied on the B23,” said Councilman David Greenfield (D-Brooklyn).

“The innovative decision by the TLC to place the Group Ride Vehicle Pilot Program along the discontinued B23 line goes a long way towards providing residents with a safe and affordable way to travel."

The vans which will replace the B23 can carry between six and eight people at a time, and will cost each traveler only $2. The new stops of the route have not yet been announced.

“This community desperately needs public transportation and the TLC’s innovative program will ensure that residents have a safe and affordable way to travel, something the MTA should, but clearly cannot, provide,” Greenfield says.