Starting in January 2019, service on the L train west of Bedford Avenue will be suspended for 15 months to allow for Sandy-related repairs. The only way to keep hundreds of thousands of people moving is to dedicate significant street space to buses on both sides of the East River. But at a presentation to elected officials on Friday, the MTA and DOT did not indicate that bus lanes are part of their plan, except on the Williamsburg Bridge itself.
Remember when Andrew Cuomo announced that he'd sealed the deal on a new contract with the TWU? Or when he empaneled an "MTA Reinvention Commission" to shape the agency's five-year capital program? Or when he ordered the MTA to quit dragging its heels on cashless tolling, and the agency promptly delivered? The governor would like you to forget all that.
While bus ridership is down citywide -- and especially in Manhattan -- there are some routes that are bucking the trend. One that's gaining riders is the M86, which got a package of upgrades from DOT and the MTA in 2015. The improvements included off-board fare collection and queue jumps -- short bus lane segments that enable buses to cut ahead of other traffic at signals.