After much rallying on the part of the community and city officials, full B64 bus service will return to Bensonhurst, Bath Beach and Coney Island.
This victory is a cause for much celebration in Southwest Brooklyn, where thousands of riders were left without service when the line was truncated with service to Coney Island eliminated due to MTA cuts in 2010. A total of $17.8 million has been invested to restore this and other bus lines all over New York that were reduced or eliminated during budget cuts, according to the MTA.
Assemblymember William Colton and his Transportation Improvement Coalition Co-Chairs Mark Treyger and Priscilla Consolo, whose efforts played an integral part in restoring the B64s service, have organized a Celebration Rally in honor of the communitys success on January 6, the day of the lines long-awaited return. The celebration will be held at 11 a.m. at the corner of Bay 50th Street and Harway Avenue
Together with the help of countless individuals and community organizations who fought hard to restore B64 service to Southwest Brooklyn, we proved there is truly strength in numbers, said Colton. This victory marks the beginning, not the end, of our work ahead to ensure further transportation movements in Southern Brooklyn.
MTA improvements also include an expansion of the S93 line in Staten Island, which will be extended to the center of the College of Staten Islands (CSI) campus starting January 23.
The extension of the S93 into the center of CSIs campus is welcome news for the students, faculty and visitors of the college, said Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis. Increasing mass transit optionsallowsmore people access to the heart of this spacious campuswhiledecreasing the need for carsthatoccupy increasingly-crowded parking lots. This is a request the community has been making for some time now and we appreciate the MTA for listening.
For many, however, these changes are not enough. Councilmember Vincent Gentile is pushing for the restoration of Bay Ridges B37 line, which used to run along Third Avenue and connect Bay Ridge to Sunset Park, Park Slope, Lutheran Hospital and Downtown Brooklyn before it was eliminated in 2010.
I welcome this first round of restorations which will reverse many of the painful 2010 transportation cuts but the fight is still on for our beloved B37. The B37 was absolutely vital to the people of Bay Ridge and beyond, Gentile said. I am hoping we will continue down this path of restoring those lines cut back in 2010 and with the completion of the new Barclays Center, we can finally persuade the MTA to bring back our beloved B37.
Malliotakis concurred. The B37 was the lifeline of the community, providing a connection to Lutheran Medical Center, downtown Brooklyn and providing economic stimulus to the merchants of Third Avenue, she said. I will continue to make the fight for its restoration a top priority of mine.