Access Queens is pleased, as public officials in Western Queens are consistently expressing support for many of the same issues that the group has been advocating in recent months.
In a recent mailing to his constituents, State Senator Mike Gianaris listed specific items that are important to Access Queens, and indeed to all area residents who regularly use mass transit. Gianaris stated that he is in support of four proposals contained within the MTA's 2015-2019 Capital Plan that, if implemented promptly, will greatly benefit transit users:
- countdown clocks for more subway stations
- general improvements to subway station conditions
- newer train cars and buses
- upgraded signal systems that allow trains to run more frequently
We at Access Queens are glad to hear from the MTA that, while still a year away, signal improvements along the 7 line are due for completion in 2017, and that Senator Gianaris is on board with these and other improvements. It is also timely to hear of his support for improved general conditions at specific stations, as the Citizens Budget Commission's annual report recently ranked the conditions at the 7 line's 52nd Street station the worst in the entire system. Clearly change is needed!
Additionally, we are gratified to read that City Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer recently wrote a letter to MTA chairman Thomas Prendergast expressing concern over persistent large-scale service disruptions along the 7 line. These are concerns shared by Access Queens, as many of our members are subject to such disruptions on a regular basis. While we are hopeful that the MTA's improvements to the signal system along the 7 line will resolve such problems, we are glad that Councilman Van Bramer is keeping close watch over this issue, and that Senator Gianaris is supportive of the funding for these improvements at the state level.
We are appreciative that our representatives are publicly raising these concerns and therefore we look forward to continued cooperation with our elected officials as well as with the MTA in 2016.