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A streetcar that’s anything but desired

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To the editor,

No truer words have been spoken.

Oh, Larry, how true your words ring (“Trolley Folly” by Larry Penner, Letters to the Editor, Aug. 31–Sept. 6, 2018).

For decades the city fathers were standing in the forefront of television cameras announcing a trolley line [that would] span 42nd Street, river to river, in 1970, ’78, ’85, ’99 and, to this day, still no trolley. The BQX is yet another costly boondoggle that I believe will never see the light of day. There is no real need to tear up streets, install high-voltage trolley lines, and install an immensely expensive to operate and maintain trolley system. If the managers had any brains and shied away from political pressure, a freshly paved and dedicated bus route roadway would prove to be more efficient, practical and far less expensive.

New York City got rid of the last trolley lines in 1960 and has never looked back. No matter what you say about buses, they have the ability to be easily rerouted when the need arises. During breakdowns, only one carload of passengers is inconvenienced, not every soul on trolleys on the line.

I stated a few years ago that a transit official in the early ’50s was questioned about expanding subway and trolley lines while the rest of the system was deteriorating badly. His response was: “Hell, if we invest in new lines, the rest of the system wouldn’t be worth the price of powder to blow it up with.”

Come to your senses, DeBlasio, and your cohort Cuomo, too. Save the existing system first, then make your grandiose plans when all else is in a state of good repair.

Robert W. Lobenstein

Marine Park

Badly beaten path

To the editor,

Your newspaper ran an article a couple of years ago about the condition of the Flatbush Avenue bicycle path that runs from Hendrickson Place all the way down to the Belt Parkway entrances on Flatbush Avenue. I’ve been trying to get the Department of Transportation to address the condition of the path for many years.

You may want to run another article. Most of the broken path is right next to city-owned property (Department of Transportation, NYPD, and Parks Department facilities on Flatbush Avenue (2890–3000 Flatbush Ave.) and the Marine Park Golf course, which is a Parks facility. In addition, the sidewalk between the entrance and exit of the Belt Parkway is completely broken. Department of Transportation put in new curb cuts for the greenway last year, but left the broken sidewalk, which was about 10 feet further up! You should run a story in the Marine Park Courier. Are they waiting for someone to fall and be injured to repair it?

In addition, I have been trying for years to get someone to clean the New York City Greenway (Jamaica Bay) between Erskine Street and the Mill Creek Bridge. Department of Transportation claims it is not its responsibility to sweep it, and states that Parks is responsible, to which Parks does not even know that it is responsible for cleaning it. Department of Transportation built the greenway and cuts the weeds on the Belt Parkway, but states it is not its job to sweep it. There is sand, weeds and gravel in this area. Can you run a story on this!Millie S.

Marine Park

Traffic nightmare

To the editor,

One of the busier corners in Brooklyn is up the block from me: Kings Highway and Nostrand Avenue. It is a transfer point for buses and sometimes a scene of accidents as drivers (and pedestrians) take chances entering too early or simply blowing through the red light. There is a camera — I’m not sure that it is in operation. During most of any weekday, traffic there builds up because of double-parked trucks and cars at the northbound stretch of Nostrand Avenue near the corner where there are a few stores and fast-food restaurants, as well as a gym. Morning and evening rush, of course, is the worst. The summer, though, as usual, has been much quieter.

In any case, during this summer, construction work began at that corner, perhaps on the strength of somebody from Wyoming, where rush hour consists of a backup of three cars at any given time. Lanes along Kings Highway were reconfigured and designated for buses only. The hours for that restriction have not been posted yet, as fas as I know. A pedestrian island was created on Nostrand Avenue, eliminating one entire lane. The turn lane was moved over to compensate for that, and it begins well back of where it began before. There is now only one lane of northbound traffic where there had been two before. This construction work was completed a few weeks ago, and the bus lane work is almost done as well.

To be brief: This Tuesday, the day after Labor Day, public and private schools will be back in session, people will be back from summer vacations and road trips, and, the traffic at this intersection will probably resemble the mind-numbing merge at the Lincoln Tunnel on any given morning.

People on my street are already planning ways to get around it, hopefully without adding 15 minutes of travel time.

You may not consider this newsworthy. Or I may be wrong. (If I am I’ll eat the next edition of your paper.) But I really hope it can generate a story at least called, “What the Hell Were They Thinking?”!!! How does a monstrous traffic imbroglio benefit anybody?Michael Emmer

Marine Park

Immigration issues

To the editor,

An illegal immigrant raped an 11-year-old girl in Brooklyn. God forbid you give this the same attention as the poor poor pizza guy. Open borders and illegal immigration bring us Julio Cesar Ayala as well as Pizza Man, who, it’s true, was not harming anyone, but [was] nevertheless here illegally. The point being that a strong vetting process to maintain control of who enters the country is what’s needed — even if the hated Donald Trump is the one enforcing the policy. Can’t wait to see what you do with this story — how you report it, how you spin it. You, as alleged journalists, should be at least as attentive to this terrible story as you were to your non-stop, wall-to-wall tears for the pizza delivery man (with no driver’s license).Fred Fredericks

Brooklyn

Grate debate

To the editor,

Anyone who bothered to watch the Democratic gubernatorial debate got a lesson as to where this state and country is heading. Andrew Cuomo, a socialist democrat, gave the standard pablum of left wing answers as to what he wants to do in his next term. Cynthia Nixon spouted her wishes and ideals right out of the communist manifesto. The state will pay for 100 percent healthcare coverage and so what if taxpayers will see a tax increase five or six-fold. The state will fix the entire deficient infrastructure thus, adding yet another layer of taxes on business and the individual. The state will become a utopia for all, just leave three-quarters-plus of your paycheck at the door.

I guess that Mr. Cuomo will get another term no matter what, though the dangerous and costly ideas from the extreme communist left — as represented by Nixon — will slowly infiltrate mainstream America. If regular voters, Democrat and Republican alike, don’t wake up and filter out these pond scum dwellers, it may be too late to save the state and our country.Robert W. Lobenstein

Marine Park

A fare exchange

To the editor,

Aug. 31, 2018 was the 49th anniversary of New York City Transit bus drivers no longer having to use a coin collector to make change for riders. Aug. 31, 1969 was the first day that bus riders either had to deposit a subway token or the exact amount in coins directly into the fare box. Drivers would no longer be required to make change. They could concentrate of driving instead of multi-tasking. It became the passenger’s responsibility to deposit the exact fare in cash or subway token directly into the fare box when boarding the bus. All the driver had to do was look through the upper portion of the fare box and make sure that the fare was paid. Previously, drivers had to deal with potential robbery while in service due to carrying cash.

Safety increased for drivers, passengers, and buses. There were fewer traffic accidents involving buses. Bus operators spent more time concentrating on driving and less making change for riders. On-time performance improved as passenger boarding time sped up.

Drivers no longer had to deal with money when returning to the bus garage. Other transit employees known as “vault pullers” would unlock the bottom of the farebox and empty the contents. Coins and subway token revenue would be sorted, counted and wrapped within the safe confines of a secure money room within the garage.Larry Penner

Great Neck

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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