Despite its motto, the MTA isn’t “going your way,” say Dyker Heights residents who find themselves at the mercy of an inefficient transportation system.
Yet residents may not have to wait much longer for service to improve, thanks to initiatives currently being considered by Community Board 10.
“We’ve gotten tons of questions about bus service,” CB10 Traffic and Transportation Committee Chairman Brian Kieran told The Brooklyn Paper, adding in agreement that “Dyker Heights is under-served.”
The Traffic and Transportation Committee will begin looking into surveying the bus routes and street signage, as well as collaborating with the MTA to improve service.
Possible options include coordinating schedules better, starting buses at different points along a route to increase seating, and even expanding express bus service through the neighborhood.
“An express bus would be great,” Dyker resident Angelina Ngo said as she waited to begin her commute to Carnegie Hall this week — a 14-mile trip that can take over an hour and a half each way.
Like so many of her neighbors, Ngo relies on the sluggish B4 bus to get her to the R train for her commute to work in Manhattan each day.
And never mind the wait to transfer to the express N!
“The bus is always late, and sometimes the trains are off schedule,” Ngo said, explaining her long commute to Midtown.
Although Dyker Heights is surrounded by the R, N, D and M subway lines, many residents are actually far from a subway station. Some even require two buses just to get to a train.
“After you transfer from the B1, about 80 percent of the time you have to wait up to a half hour for the B4,” said commuter Edith Gugliemelli, who was waiting for a bus at 13th Avenue and Bay Ridge Parkway. “And this is during rush hour. You can’t expect a lot of people to walk to the [subway] station from here.”
While many can’t do the walk, it is also difficult to stay in place now that winter is upon us. CB10 member Larry Stelter said he once found people huddled in an apartment lobby to keep warm because they had waited so long in the cold for a B4 to arrive.
“It’s unacceptable,” said Stelter.
Fran Vella-Marrone, the president of the Dyker Heights Civic Association, is hopeful that relief may be in sight.
“I think this is a combination of local and citywide issues,” Vella-Marrone said.
“Changing the starting point of the local buses is a good first step for immediate relief, but the long-term solution is to create a new express bus route.”