Cuts to NYC bus lines that would have left residents stranded will not come to pass under a deal worked out by the MTA and the governor. As a result, the drastic measures planned for the Bx14 and Bx8 buses will not occur.
As part of a deal reached in Albany, all Bronx bus line cuts were rescinded. Instead, there will be hikes in MTA fares and tolls, as well as Department of Motor Vehicle registration fees. The new revenue will hep the MTA operating budget and short-term financial needs.
The Bx14 was scheduled to be totally eliminated, essentially cutting off Country Club and Spencer Estate from the rest of the borough’s mass transit.
Country Club Civic Association president Marcia Pavlica was thrilled to hear that the Bx14 was saved. Many children from Villa Maria Academy and workers at Providence Rest rely on this vital mass-transit link, she said.
“If the Bx14 truly has been saved, then we are overjoyed,” Pavlica said. “Credit needs to be given to the residents for the community’s united efforts to keep our neighborhood bus. We are appreciative to those in state and local government who fought beside their constituents.”
In Locust Point and Edgewater Park, Sunday service on the Bx8 was facing eliminating. This would have hurt seniors who use the bus to go shopping and to attend church, as well as young people who use mass transit to other neighborhood.
“Our whole neighborhood is dependent on the Bx8 bus because we are so out of the way,” said Jerry Landi, vice-president of the Locust Point Civic Association. “The younger people and the older people who rely on the bus would have had to walk to Pennyfield Avenue, and maybe even to E. Tremont Avenue to catch the bus. Our seniors use the bus as a means of getting around.”
Landi added: “We are very happy as a community that the Bx8 bus will still be coming into Locust Point on Sunday. With gas prices being what they are, and the mayor’s push for us to go Green, keeping this bus line operating seven days a week seems like the right thing to do.”
Now that the local bus routes appear saved, Assemblyman Michael Benedetto has turned his attention to getting an express bus to run from his district into lower Manhattan’s Wall Street.
“I have talked with the Mayor about having a convenient way to get from our neighborhoods to Wall Street,” Benedetto said.
“With Mayor Bloomberg talking about moving people out of their cars and onto mass transit, we have one good incentive for a Wall Street express bus.”