Don’t waste rail line
Apr 09, 2014 | 1725 views | 0 0 comments | 101 101 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Dear Editor:

Whatever happened to doing fair studies of finding the best solution to a problem?

It appears that the city has already made up its mind that we will have Select Bus Service (SBS) along Woodhaven Blvd just because it has six lanes, although traffic will be made much worse. There is not enough capacity as is, hence the banning of left turns at many intersections.

SBS will only save bus riders a maximum of 10 or 15 minutes of what is for many now a two-plus hour trip. However, reactivation of the Rockaway Rail Line could cut trip times in half.

It can be reactivated through many forms, and converted to a bus rapid transit line if it turns out that the economics and ridership is not there for a rail line. We can have the benefits of SBS and more without any of the negatives that go along with putting SBS on Woodhaven and Cross Bay boulevards

The important thing is that all options are fairly studied and the right of wat remains for mass transit usage. But turning it into a park eliminates that option.

To those of you who think we can have both - SBS along Woodhaven and future reactivation of the Rockaway Line - you are fooling yourself. Once SBS is constructed along Woodhaven Boulevard, the city will declare a ten-minute travel time saving a huge success and the transportation problem for those in the Rockaways and southern Queens will be “solved.” Reactivation will be dead.

A vote for Woodhaven SBS is the same as a vote for Queensway. No one will mention that auto and car trips on Woodhaven will increase by 30 minutes in exchange for the 10 minutes saved by buses.

And with the limited destinations of the buses, few if any auto riders will be able to switch from car to bus. They would still require four or five transfers, which is why they are in their car in the first place.

We must make transportation convenient for all, not slightly more convenient for a few and harm many more. Reactivation of the rail line will foster development, create jobs, help the economy and raise property values, as well as improving transportation. Queensway will do none of that.

Let’s have a fair study comparing the advantages and disadvantages of each option as compared to each other, and not draw conclusions beforehand like we are doing now.


Allen Rosen

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