Local bus access to Boston, MA can dramatically cut travel time

Local bus access to Boston, MA can dramatically cut travel time
Charles J. Crimi Road, alongside Pelham Bay Park, is the planned location for the bus stop. The area is currently used as an MTA bus layover site.
Community News Group/Sarah Valenzuela

Buckle up Bronxites, you may soon be able to conveniently snag a bus ride all the way to Boston.

A bus line company called Catch-A-Ride is planning a route that will run through Brooklyn and the Bronx, to Boston, MA.

The idea for the bus route was concieved by Jared Maldonado, the founder and owner of Catch-A-Ride, when he realized there were little to no options for intercity public transit in the outer boroughs.

“We have five boroughs…other options should exist,” Maldonado said. “I saw the need and I just figured, why not fill that need.”

The route follows the growing trend of other major transit lines that are establishing stations outside of city centers.

He explained the time-saving practicality of his transit plan for Boston-bound travellers: “(Imagine) you’re leaving the Bronx to go one hour, two hours in the wrong direction on a train (to Penn Station). Then an hour later (the train you’re on) is passing through the Bronx (again), on your way to Boston, when you could’ve been passed Hartford already.”

The main difficulty the community board perceived with this stop was whether it would worsen the congestion in the area.

There was some concern that the bus users would drive their cars to the area and then park their cars there for days or wait in a parked vehicle at the bus stop for the bus to arrive.

“The city can’t stop interstate commerce, which is what this might be,” remarked Matthew Cruz, the district manager of Community Board 10. “If this issue were to pose a problem and we find the operator is not adhering to some of the regulations, we of course will revisit this.”

The company assured the community board that its riders are not likely to park in the area because most intercity bus users depend on public transportation to get to their pickup locations.

“We reiterated to them our first concern is the residents. We want to make sure no one is parking in our communities,” Cruz continued.

The bus stop is expected to be located next to Pelham Bay Park along Charles J. Crimi Place. The area is home to many other bus stops and is located across from the #6 IRT Pelham Bay Park train station.

“We purposely picked a location that was a major transportation hub,” Maldonado continued. “Obviously there are always going to be people who are going to be driven in, but we don’t expect them to be the majority of our riders.”

Catch-A-Ride does not have a firm launch date, though Maldonado hoped he would have the financing in place to be fully established and running sometime in 2018.

Through 2017, the company worked with MBT Worldwide of Tewksbury, MA and ran a few bus trips during the peak holiday travel period.

This trial service drew about 1,200 riders.

Additional trial service will be available during Christmas and New Years.

Tickets, as well as additional information about these schedules can be found on their website catcharidebus.com

The company said it plans to offer complimentary water, wifi and electrical outlets.

The company also promised to make restroom stops along the route if the bus or van does not have a restroom on board.

Reach Reporter Sarah Valenzuela at (718) 260-4584. E-mail her at svalenzuela@cnglocal.com.

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