Queens bus rerouting plan is under scrutiny by cycling groups and seniors advocates

On April 12, Councilman Robert Holden asked the MTA to hold in-person meetings. The city’s Department of Aging has sent digital copies to every senior center and home care agency that works in the borough. People can also leave comments through the MTA’s Queens Bus Network Redesign Site. The website has an interactive map where people can comment on the proposals local and expressways.

When she contacted the MTA, the response was that there would be more meetings after those first 14. But Sorento hopes it will. “I don’t believe that really older adults have the opportunity to really express themselves,” she said.

Riders Alliance lead organizer Jolyse Race said the goal of the process was to end up with a more efficient bus system.

“If done correctly, [the new design] will reduce the time passengers spend waiting for the bus,” she said. “It will make travel faster, more reliable and more direct and can expand where people can get to using public transit.”

Stephen Bauman, a computer scientist, said there needed to be a higher level of transparency in the decision-making process. He said the MTA should release more data so that an independent analysis of the proposed changes can be made.

Several participants were also concerned about the lack of awareness. Sorento said: “Unless you’re looking for it, or you’re in my senior center and I tell you it’s happening, people aren’t really aware of the impact it’s going to have on them, they don’t know which stop is removed, added or changed.”

To register for upcoming MTA meetings, click this link.

Earnest L. Veasey