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Bus-ted! Critics cry foul on MTA’s ‘one-sided’ bus pitch • Brooklyn Paper

Bus-ted! Critics cry foul on MTA’s ‘one-sided’ bus pitch

Lane pain: Councilman Alan Maisel has voiced his opposition to plans to bring select bus service to the B82, because he says it bus-only lanes will grind traffic along Flatlands Avenue — which is frequently gridlocked during rush hour — to a halt.
Photo by Steve Schnibbe

Brooklynites blasted the Metropolitan Transportation Authority for trying to pull a fast one on them on Jan. 20.

The agency showed Community Board 18 plans for a B82 Select Bus Service along Flatlands Avenue and Kings Highway, but the slideshow steered around any mention of the proposed route’s dreaded bus-only lanes or what ceding half the four-lane streets would do to traffic, one vocal critic said.

“Those pictures that you showed, they’re irrelevant, because they don’t show what’s going to happen once you eliminate that [public] lane,” Councilman Alan Maisel (D–Canarsie) told transit officials.

Authority reps were quick to point out bonuses that come with select service — more attractive bus stops, informational boards, wait-time displays, and improvements to intersections along the route — but the pitch was phony, because they didn’t so much as hint at the prospective dedicated bus lanes that locals fear will clog traffic along the already backed-up thoroughfares, another critic said.

“It was a one-sided presentation saying ‘This is what we’re going to do for you,’ but at no point did they say ‘This is what it’s going to cost you’ in ease of use, mobility, increased congestion, and things of that nature,” said board chairman Saul Needle.

The city’s nine select bus service routes all use dedicated bus lanes, but an authority spokesman said officials are still deciding whether they’ll create one for the B82.

The service would connect East New York and Coney Island, officials said.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4505.

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