Overtaxed Transportation Systems in Crisis
In 1988 I moved to an apartment on Boulevard East in North Bergen. I can assure you that at that time standing room was unheard of on the busses that run up and down the Boulevard. Over the years, I began noticing that busses would fill up occasionally, but only toward "the end of the line", ie, in Weehawken, shortly before heading into the Lincoln Tunnel and we'd have passengers standing in the aisles, hanging on for dear life around curves, a commute that is uncomfortable even to those with a seat. Now, standing room is routine on busses both going in and coming out of NY, and the crowding is by no means confined to rush hours. This is uncomfortable for all passengers, but intolerable for the disabled and the aged. In addition, standing room occurs earlier and earlier along the route so that, even though I usually get a seat when boarding at my bus stop on 74th St, others boarding just a few stops beyond are frequently forced to stand. Why the overcrowding on the busses? The Port Authority Bus Terminal is a dinosaur of a building that has for many years been incapable of accommodating the number of busses it has come to serve. Why doesn't New Jersey Transit (NJT) simply run more busses? In fact, they would love the additional revenue they could receive from running additional busses, but are limited by the size of The Port Authority Bus Terminal, which has been operating well above capacity for years. Busses can no longer access PABT in the afternoons, lines of busses surround the building and the simple process of entering the building and being let off a bus can add an additional half hour or more to a commute. Have you tried to board a bus leaving NYC between 4:30pm and 7:30pm lately? Lines for the busses serving Boulevard East snake down the escalator leading to the boarding platform and extend from the south building to the neighboring north building and soon threaten to go all the way out of the terminal to the street. And when you do finally board, you will be subject, once again, to a jam packed standing room only ride. All the above has given rise to the jitneys which are generally slow, uncomfortable, and less than professionally administered. They have taken over our streets and are a direct result of the current inability of NJT to service the number of people who have come to live in our area.
Are we really content to sit back and tolerate the overbuilding of our area by developers who come in and build- seemingly