City and MTA Still Have No Clue How L Train Shutdown Will Work

Featured Image: All these people will need a new way to get to work starting in April 2019.

A while ago, our boss announced an upcoming change in our employment!

I love working in Nice, France but would love to move back to New York City! In addition, it’s BROOKLYN!

But project is on HOLD!

How will the roughly 200,000 New Yorkers who ride the L train from Brooklyn to Manhattan and back each day get where they need to go when the tunnel is shut down for more than a year in early 2019? With just sixteen months left before the Canarsie tunnel undergoes extensive repairs from the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy, the MTA and the New York City Department of Transportation still have not come up with a plan.

“The deadline is drawing nearer and nearer…and the information getting back to us from the MTA and DOT has been extremely limited to nonexistent,” Williamsburg Councilmember Antonio Reynoso said at a press conference on Monday morning.

Reynoso was one of roughly a dozen lawmakers and representatives from community organizations who appeared before the media to say that both the DOT and the MTA have failed to communicate with them on how they are addressing the crisis, and that time is running out.

“In terms of business planning, next year is like tomorrow for our businesses,” said Leah Archibald, the executive director of Evergreen, a trade group for industrial businesses in North Brooklyn. “The pending L train shutdown is a big deal to the hundreds and hundreds of industrial businesses that we work with and their many thousands of employees.”

This past March, nearly a year after the coming shutdown was revealed, the MTA announced that the L train repairs would take 15 months, beginning in April of 2019. Both agencies said that a mitigation plan would be presented to communities and finalized by the end of this year.

In May, the DOT and the MTA briefed lawmakers on ideas for addressing the commuters affected by the shutdown, including bus-only and HOV lanes on the Williamsburg Bridge, as well as a new ferry line to run between North 6th Street in Williamsburg and East 20th Street in Manhattan. But about 70 percent of L train riders, they noted, were expected to be diverted to the J/M/Z and G lines, which would see their service increased.

Asked when the MTA or DOT last had a meaningful discussion with lawmakers and community members about mitigation efforts during the shutdown, some attendees at the press conference said “never.” Brooklyn Councilmember Stephen Levin replied, “Many months.”

“What we’re hearing from DOT and the MTA is that they have plans drawn up but they aren’t ready to share them with us yet,” said Minna Elias, the district chief of staff for Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, whose district encompasses parts of North Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan. “We understand that they’re sitting on the mayor’s desk or somewhere at City Hall, and it’s time for them to release their plans so that the public can comment on them.”

GEE!!! It is important to US!

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