Rallying to bring back the B64

Assemblymember Bill Colton and members of the Transport Workers Union Local 100 will rally with Bensonhurst residents on Saturday, June 16 in front of the Ulmer Park Bus Depot to restore B64 bus service to Coney Island.

Colton organized a campaign to bring back the full length of the bus route, which was truncated in June, 2010 at Harway Avenue and 25th Avenue instead of running to Stillwell Avenue in Coney Island, as it originally did.

“I will not allow the MTA to get away with their assault on working people, seniors, disabled persons and children from across Southwest Brooklyn,” said Colton. “By eliminating B64 service from Harway Avenue to Coney Island, the MTA has literally stranded and crippled families, the local economy, and the outlook of a newly devised Coney Island amusement district.

“Additionally, the MTA made an equally shortsighted decision to cut in half the service the B82 provides from 25thAvenue to Coney Island,” he went on. “The same affected populations and economic engines that are being hurt by the B64 cuts are feeling double the pain by these crippling and ill-advised service cuts.”

In April, the TWU joined Colton’s fight to bring back the bus route. Many neighborhood organizations have also signed on, including Most Precious Blood Roman Catholic Church, Bensonhurst West End Community Council, Harway Terrace Apartments Board of Directors, Our Lady of Grace Roman Catholic Church, Castellammare del Golfo, Aidone Social Cultural Association, ASU of New York, Friends of the Boardwalk, Community Education Council District 21, NIA Community Services Network, Southern Brooklyn Democrats, United Progressive Democratic Club, Brooklyn Young Democrats and the United Chinese Association of Brooklyn. Representatives of all the groups are expected to be at the rally.

With the amusements at Coney Island now opening for the season and more attractions and restaurants slated to open this year, Colton said transportation to the seaside destination is all the more needed.

“This is a classic example of government incompetence,” Colton said. “On one hand the city of New York invests millions of dollars to revamp Coney Island’s amusement district to attract millions of tourists and on the other hand, our transportation agency decides to reduce service in the area. It does not add up and this is why people rightfully lose faith in government.”

A spokesperson for the MTA said the organization was unable to comment on the issue until the petition was officially submitted.

The rally will take place in front of the Ulmer Park Depot at Harway and 25th Avenues on Saturday, June 16 at 11 a.m.

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