A few days ago, the redoubtable MTA announced that their tradition of presenting vintage Subway trains during the holiday season will continue in 2013. There will also be vintage buses running on 42nd street in the city, but let’s face it, fellow Queensicans — we don’t go there on the weekends unless we absolutely have to. Why would you, if you live in a place as great as Queens?
The “Nostalgia Special,” as MTA calls it, will be running along the M line between Queens and Manhattan again this year during the first four Sundays in December and offers a ride on trains which can date back as far as the 1930′s.
The MTA just finished an $8,500,000 renovation project at the Queens Village Long Island Rail Road station. Queens Courier reports that improvements include two new heavy-duty elevators, new signage, railings, lighting, and a fire alarm system. The MTA also rehabilitated the platform waiting room, repainted the building and added a new shelter shed. Finally, they installed bird abatement devices, drainage and erosion control and security cameras. The current station building first opened in 1924. You can see lots of photos of the station renovation here.
Ridgewood may get a short busway underneath the elevated M tracks, between Fresh Pond Road and Palmetto Street. As Streetsblog reports, this would be the first separated busway in New York since the MTA installed one along the Fulton Street Mall in Brooklyn in the 70s. This busway, which will run six-tenths of a mile, will have one lane in each direction with three bus stops. The project, estimated to cost between $12,500,000 and $19,000,000, was included in the regional transportation funding plan approved last month by the Metropolitan Transportation Council. Still, the MTA has not made a final decision on carrying out the proposal. Streetsblog guesses that the transit project “wouldn’t transform a car-choked traffic sewer into a pedestrian-friendly transit boulevard” — however, “It would help show how quickly, smoothly, and reliably buses can run when traffic doesn’t get in the way.”
The 7 train won’t run regularly for multiple weekends this fall, reports Queens Courier. This weekend you’re safe, but on the weekends of October 12th to 13th, October 19th to 20th, October 26th to 27th, November 9th to 10th and November 23rd to 24th, there will be no service between Times Square-42nd Street and Queensboro Plaza from 12:01 am on Saturday to 5 am on Monday. A free shuttle will run between the Vernon-Jackson and Queensboro Plaza stops, and the MTA plans to increase Astoria service. The shutdowns are due to service maintenance in the Steinway Tunnel, which will wrap in 2016. Unfortunately, more weekend shutdowns for the 7 train are coming in early 2014.
An eagle-eyed tipster spotted signage up at the Myrtle Wyckoff Subway Station on the border of Bushwick and Ridgewood. The MTA is hoping to lease retail space in the ground floor of the station building. The city opened the snazzy transportation hub back in 2007, and there has never been retail in that space. What would you like to see go in here? Check out a photo of the MTA signage after the jump. GMAP(more…)
A Rockaway resident says rush hour buses get so packed that they regularly have to pass their scheduled stops. The MTA earlier this week said that they would be adding more rush hour shuttle buses to serve the damaged “A” train subway line, but that they are cutting non-peak buses. The number of shuttle runs overall will decrease.
Queens Public Transit Committee Member Philip McManus told Queens NYC that Rockaway residents are starting to lose faith in the democratic process, and like “slaves to the MTA monopoly.”
McManus also said;
MTA refuses to help us…Its a third world transit system in Rockaway. Rockaway has and is being harmed by the neglect of the MTA and the City.
It makes common sense. Our population is growing and we need more trains, buses and increase trackage. The Woodhaven Boulevard corridor has too much traffic, accidents, construction and too many traffic variables and we need to reduce air pollution, CO2 emissions, gas consumption. [The old line] is the best public transit option. It would improve Queens Crosstown transit and unite Queens. Not to mention increase business and employment opportunities.
McManus said the MTA is currently using three double length buses, called articulated buses, for the shuttle–but that more are sorely needed.
“Bigger longer buses will absolutely help,” said McManus.
It’s a good thing for McManus then that the Transit Workers Union Local 100, which works that line, is the permitting the MTA to use these buses. Some union heavyweights wanted to cut the use of long buses, The Wave reports. Some reportedly fear that the extra long buses will reduce jobs for drivers.
The NY Observer reports that MTA Bus Time – the MTA’s trademarked real-time bus tracking tool – is going to be “aggressively” spread throughout Queens. Right now the Bronx and Staten Island have it on an extensive number of routes. Queens only has one route hooked into Bus Time, the Q50 (which goes between the Bronx and Queens). But the system has proved to be so helpful, the MTA wants it implemented throughout the other three boroughs – Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens. (more…)
We recently read A Newbie’s Guide to Bushwick Subway Stops from Bushwick Daily and we liked it so much, we decided to do our own version for Astoria. Here, we present a brief subway stop by subway stop breakdown of where to live and why. We start with the N/Q in Astoria (Astoria is also served by the M/R – more on that at another time).
In general, rents throughout Astoria run about around $1,600 for a one bedroom and $2,000 for a two bedroom, but of course there are exceptions to that on either end of the pricing spectrum. New construction tends to be more expensive than older construction, and rather than big developments, Astoria has a lot of infill construction, which affects rents as well.