Dec. 4, 2017 By Nathaly Pesantez
L train riders will assemble tomorrow to protest the line’s looming shutdown, yet to be met with a “concrete plan” by the MTA, which is being criticized for its infrequent communication on the matter with the community.
The protest will take place at The West at 379 Union Ave. from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., and will be attended by a host of community advocates and leaders, including Neighbors Allied for Good Growth, Transportation Alternatives, and local officials like council members Stephen Levin and Antonio Reynoso.
“Residents and business owners throughout Northern Brooklyn will be dramatically affected by the L Train shutdown, announced to commence in April 2019, only 17 months from now!” reads part of the L Train Coalition’s Facebook post on the event.
“The community needs a report of the current plans for transportation remediation, a serious discussion around help for local businesses, and any street use changes proposed by the Department of Transportation,” wrote the L Train coalition.
In April, the MTA voted to shut down the L train tunnel, connecting Brooklyn and Manhattan, for 15 months to make way for Hurricane Sandy-related repairs. The MTA has not announced a specific plan to make up for the lost service, and was not prepared to update Community Board 1’s Transportation Committee in the last several months on the progress of a plan. Some initiatives, however, have been rolled out by the agency ahead of the tunnel’s shut down.
In October, the MTA voted to purchase 180 articulated buses, or longer buses with the accordion-like feature in its body, to increase capacity in North Brooklyn during the tunnel repairs. But CB1’s Environmental Committee head announced in November that it would be in talks with the MTA after it was revealed that the additional buses would run on diesel, a concern for an area long-plagued with health issues related to diesel-fumes.
Community groups like NAG have also pushed to secure a range of solutions before the shutdown, and succeeded in getting the MTA to reopen a station entrance along the J/M/Z lines.
For more information on the event, along with the full list of groups involved, visit the event’s page on Facebook.