Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Reflections on the B61 and Suckage

It's hard to say whether the B61 bus or the G Train generate more discontent, except that we think the G generally gets more space on blogs and in print. Yet, the B61--which runs from Red Hook to Long Island City, via Downtown Brooklyn and Williamsburg--does manage to drive the people that depend on it rather insane too. We've been following a discussion about "B61 the Worst Bus in the City?" on the Community Board 1 email group and though we'd share one we like:
As more and more people realize the convenience provided by the bus (e.g., north end of Greenpoint is not such a bad place to live if you can grab the bus and be at the 7 stop in 10 minutes) the ridership has obviously increased. It doesn't surprise me that the MTA thinks it hasn't, because this is the same agency that needed to commission a study in order to realize that ridership on the L has exploded.

As a regular B61 rider, I have noticed a few things that don't help. One, the B61 going down Manhattan instead of down McGuinness, it has to contend with delivery truck traffic blocking and markedly slowing down traffic...Riders don't help themselves by refusing to exit the bus at the rear, thus delaying new riders from entering the bus. I'm not talking about mothers with strollers, the elderly or differently-abled, I'm talking people who just for whatever reason refuse to open the rear door or don't understand how to push the yellow tape and have the doors open automatically... Also, how hard is it to learn the concept of "move to the rear of the bus"? I realize there are a lot of newcomers to the city in the Williamsburg/Greenpoint area but these people's inability to grasp basic bus riding techniques continues to floor me. I've been ranting about this forever, but it doesn't seem like this bus line gets any attention...
Another says:
The situation is horrid. Long Rush hour waits have always been frustratingly unpredictable. At least that part has changed-- now it's safe to say that walking across the bridge is more reliable!
The B61 is being extended in Red Hook so it will stop at Ikea's front door when the store opens.

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Blogger Bryan said...

this is a problem with most buses in manhattan and brooklyn.

2:01 PM  
Anonymous neighborhood threat said...

Last night at Vernon-Jackson: no less than SIX buses came over the bridge and headed for Queens Plaza. It took half an hour before a bus showed up (and that was after two 'next bus please' buses went by). When asked why, the driver didn't even respond or acknowledge the comment or the issue.

When the bus finally did show up, another one appeared right behind it.

And they say the bus line is underutilized.

5:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Complaining on a blog is okay, but it probably would be better if you complained to community board 1, or your city council person, or state senator or assembly person. The more complaints people with actual power receive, the more likely it is that something will be done.

7:47 PM  

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