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Big Brooklyn bus boost begins Sunday

Bus-aster! Seventh Ave’s two lines behaving like one
The B67 and B69 buses in Park Slope are still showing up in bunches — just as they were when we did our first story in July.
Community Newspaper Group / Bess Adler

Straphangers rejoice — Brooklyn is getting its buses back!

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced the restoration of service to seven borough lines that suffered during 2010 budget cuts, as well as plans to establish new routes in North Brooklyn and Downtown.

As of Jan. 6, Brooklyn straphangers will enjoy one-seat service from Bushwick and IKEA on the B57, easier trips between Bay Ridge and the People’s Playground on the B64, and a renewed link between Downtown and Prospect Park on the B48.

Buses will roll during more hours of the day on the:

• B4: Restoration of full-time service to Sheepshead Bay from Bay Ridge.

• B39: Restoration of daytime service between Wiliamsburg and Manhattan.

• B24: Restoration of weekend service between Williamsburg and Queens.

• B69: Restoration of weekend service between Downtown and Kensington.

In addition to Sunday’s service spike, the MTA announced plans to create additional routes later this year, including a service running between the so called “Tech Triangle” of Downtown, DUMBO, and the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and a line linking Greenpoint, Williamsburg, and Queens.

The bus boost comes three years after the MTA shortened or eliminated numerous borough bus routes to cover $93 million in budget cuts, citing decreased ridership on surface-level transit.

But things have apparently changed since then — the transportation provider will pay for an additional $29 million per year under the new plan.

The newfound cash comes from fares and frugality, according to the MTA.

“[The service increases] are paid for with increased revenue generated by additional ridership on the MTA system, as well as savings from the MTA’s continued rigorous efforts to contain costs,” a press release promoting the service improvements last summer read.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4514.

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