MTA Funding Debate Enters Crunch Time

The MTA's "doomsday" budget eliminates the W train and includes many other service cuts.

Several key developments in the MTA’s funding saga have taken place in the past week:

On Tuesday, 10 members of the MTA Board traveled to Albany to lobby state lawmakers in support of the Ravitch [...]

Route 29: Gov. Corzine, Tear Down This Wall!

Trenton's waterfront development plan would convert Route 29 to a boulevard, create a waterfront park, and create a mixed-use neighborhood where only parking exists today.

Earlier this month, a teardown of a portion of Route 29 in Trenton got a huge boost when the city of Trenton signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) [...]

March 6 Forum to Explore How Regional Bus Could Impact Nassau

The Tri-State Transportation Campaign and Regional Plan Association are following up on the successful Westchester County regional bus forum and holding a forum on how regional bus would affect Nassau County on March 6 at 8:30 am, at Hofstra University’s Guthart Cultural Center (click for map). Speakers and panelists include Nassau County Executive Thomas Suozzi, State Assemblymembers Michelle Schimel and Dave McDonough, and bus rapid transit expert Walter Hook of the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy. Breakfast will be served.

Regional bus could mean more integrated service between suburban counties and NYC.

Regional bus could mean more integrated service between suburban counties and NYC.

Regional bus is one of the recommendations in the Ravitch Commission’s report on funding and reforming the MTA. While some of the Ravitch funding recommendations, such as a payroll tax, have received significant public attention, regional bus has not.

As proposed in the Ravitch report and described by MTA officials, Nassau’s Long Island Bus and Westchester’s Bee-Line would be consolidated into a new MTA Regional Bus Authority and the MTA would assume financial responsibility for running both systems.

The new structure could streamline operations and end annual feuds between the counties, state and MTA over funding the systems, allowing Long Island Bus to more quickly expand, upgrade, and maintain its system. The forum will address this potential, along with the management, labor and funding issues that would need to be overcome to make it a reality.

A regional bus authority could also accelerate the creation of a 21st-century bus system including more innovative routes like the successful Select Bus Service in the Bronx. Walter Hook will give a presentation describing successful BRT systems from around the world.

The program agenda is after the jump. Space is now extremely limited, so please RSVP by the end of today, February 27. Regional Plan Association is handling RSVPs at this web form.

» Continue reading…

ConnDOT Stimulus Wish List Finally Sees Light of Day

As President Obama was signing into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in Denver last week, the Tri-State Campaign finally secured a copy of ConnDOT’s elusive “wish list” of stimulus projects.   Advocates had been trying to obtain the list for months, but it proved as elusive as the island on Lost — that [...]

Broadway's Big Day

Mayor Bloomberg's plan will create more pedestrian space in Times Square and Herald Square and improve traffic flow. (Above, a before-and-after rendering of 7th Ave. at Times Square.)

Today Mayor Bloomberg and New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan announced a new plan to close portions of Broadway to cars and [...]

Penn Commuters May Reclaim Pedestrian Tunnel From Rats

A private developer has offered to renovate and reopen the Gimbels passageway, in yellow above, which would provide an underground connection between Penn Station and Herald Square.

The walk from Penn Station could be less crowded in a few years. As part of the redevelopment of Hotel Pennsylvania and the Manhattan Mall, the [...]

The Ravitch Plan: One Small Business Perspective

The following is a first-hand account from Tri-State executive director Kate Slevin:

Tri-State is a non-profit organization, but on many financial levels we are similar to any small business located in downstate New York. While we are exempt from a number of taxes and don’t make a profit like private companies, we still pay [...]

New Camera is Small Step for NYC Buses; State Can Make it a Giant Leap

The camera will fine owners of taxis that violate the bus lane, but cannot ticket other vehicles.

Today NYCDOT, the MTA, and NYC’s Taxi and Limousine Commission announced the activation of New York City’s first bus lane enforcement camera, at 34th Street between Park and Madison Aves. The camera, the first of three [...]

Terminal Velocity Quantifies NYC's Speeding Epidemic, Need for Speed Enforcement Cameras

Transportation Alternatives’ recently-released report Terminal Velocity: New York City’s Speeding Epidemic documents drivers’ speeds at 13 of the most dangerous locations in the five boroughs. In one of the largest surveys of its kind conducted in the city, T.A. found that, citywide, 39% of motorists are driving above the 30 mph citywide speed [...]

New Subway Ads Call for Action on Transit Funding

(Click for larger image.)

Today the Empire State Transportation Alliance announced the release of new subway and bus ads aimed at mobilizing riders to speak up to stop fare hikes and service cuts.

The ads are posted in 3,000 New York City subway cars and urge riders to visit KeepNewYorkMoving.org and tell [...]