2007-11-30 / Letters

Get It Together

The following letter was written to the Chairman of the MTA and to Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Dear Editor,

Without you two being on the same page, how can The City of New York possibly progress with de-congestion?

'Far too many people commute to the City by car', the Mayor reports, 'and so we must raise the bar...tax our commuters to incentivize them to use our MTA.'

Coincident to this grand green plan, rapid transit leaders have just gleefully announced their first major railroad expansion in 50 years…the building of a new subway line on Manhattan's Upper East Side.

This $4 billion MTA project (and, who knows, when done it might cost $8 Billion will not reduce commuter traffic by even one smart car, SUV or delivery van...not even one!!!

What am I missing here, Messieurs Bloomberg and Hemmerdinger?

It's like you two are either blissfully unaware of each other's aspirations or in fierce competition.

I dunno...if I wanted more commuters riding subways I'd try to clean up the system; add a few creature comforts; and, you know, guarantee that conveniences (necessities) like escalators and elevators functioned, somewhat flawlessly. When I walk into Macy's, I fully expect their ancient escalators to be working; from years and years of experience I have zero confidence the subway escalators at the adjoining 34 Street subway station will be operating.

Most importantly, though, if I were embarking on subway expansion, I would lay out systems to the under-served, not the overserved, areas of our city. I would consider - firstly - extending our subway lines to the Nassau County borders to capture both city and suburban commuters; and then think through the extension of the LIRR Flatbush line to Wall Street, rather than foolishly wasting billions on a few tearful East-siders.

Please, gentlemen, sit down and work this out to the benefit of all New Yorkers...too much is at stake for you to be spending and taxing at cross-purposes.

PETER STUBBEN

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