Sorry to end the work week on a bummer note, but we want to offer some different perspectives on the proposed MTA service cuts affecting subways, buses and commuter trains, which by all accounts look fairly hardcore. Mind you, we think much of the early proposals are simply political posturing to get riders worked up as they picture themselves waiting…and waiting…and waiting for that graffitti-covered G train as crackheads rummage through their purse, and force the guy pulling the purse strings to open up his satchel.
But MTA chief exec Elliot Sander is busting out some pretty grave adjectives to describe the cuts, which are designed to help make up the agency’s $1.2 billion shortfall for next year; among them, “draconian,” “harsh” and “very severe.” Price hikes, perhaps as early as the spring, will help cover the deficit too.
Subway cuts would include the outright elimination of the W and the Z (mind you, MLB was gonna “contract” the Minnesota Twins back in 2002, and they nearly made the playoffs this past year) and the shortening of the M and G, along with general scaling back of service for the remaining lines.
The NY Times blog City Room describes the commuter rail cuts thusly:
The Long Island Rail Road would cut 173 positions, cancel and combine some train lines, reduce service on weekends and off-peak hours and cut train crews. The Metro-North Railroad would cut 88 positions, shorten trains, increase the loading guidelines, slow down the restoration of Grand Central Terminal and cut cleaning and maintenance at the terminal. Fares would rise by 43 percent on the Long Island Bus.
StationStops has CBS2 reporting the shuttering of ticket offices, and committing the unforgiveable sin of calling our beloved morning destination “Grand Central Station.”
Metro-North will be eliminating three trains on the Hudson line, two on the Harlem line and four on the New Haven line.
At Grand Central Station, the station master’s office will close and the Harrison ticket office, as well as ticket offices in Crestwood and New Canaan, Conn., will also close.
SecondAvenueSagas is of course all over it like TJ on a Friday bottle of Sam Adams.
Amidst it all, it’s hard not to think about the quarter-billion paid out in those LIRR disability claims, many, many of them bogus.