Council Member Carlina Rivera discusses the M14 at a Friday rally. (Photo via @CarlinaRivera Twitter)
By Maria Rocha-Buschel
Lower East Side elected officials and residents rallied last Friday for the MTA to reconsider a proposal that would eliminate local bus stops on the M14A and D with the advent of select bus service on the route, while also advocating for the removal of some of the SBS stops in the plan.
Council Member Carlina Rivera, whose district covers areas in the East Village where stops would be removed, and other elected officials also argued that some of the proposed SBS stops should be removed.
The new SBS route proposes to remove a number of stops that provide public transportation near senior centers and NYCHA developments in the Lower East Side, Rivera said, while also not eliminating enough stops to actually speed up service. This, she added, highlights a need for both local buses and an even more pared down SBS route.
“Our M14 bus is the second-busiest bus route in Manhattan and sadly also the second slowest,” Rivera said. “We need solutions for both those who need faster transit options and those will be forced to walk over half a mile between the proposed new bus stops and their homes, with no other affordable options. The current M14 SBS plan not only fails seniors and low-income New Yorkers, but it also diminishes how transformative an SBS route could be for the area.”
One of the possible projects is $250,000 in enhancements to the Asser Levy Recreation Center.
By Maria Rocha-Buschel
Residents in City Council Districts 2 and 4 will get a chance to vote on improvements in their neighborhood during participatory budgeting vote week starting on March 30.
Councilmembers Keith Powers of District 4 and Carlina Rivera of District 2 solicited ideas for “capital” projects this past fall and volunteers went through the suggestions and picked roughly a dozen ideas per district that residents can vote on through April 7.
Powers, who represents Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village, Waterside, Midtown East, Central Park South and the Upper East Side, has a handful of district-wide improvements that residents can vote on. One project, which would cost $200,000, would bring countdown clocks with real-time passenger information to bus stops throughout the district. Another project would resurface distressed roads for one mile of Council District 4 and would require $250,000 in funding. New plantings and tree guards throughout the district would cost $150,000.
Local residents can also vote for improvements to the Asser Levy Recreation Center across from Peter Cooper Village, which would provide new fitness equipment and flooring in the gym of the rec center and would cost $250,000.