MTAproposes more service cuts

June 21, 2010 4:33:49 PM PDT
Just when you thought subway and bus service couldn't get any more bare bones, there is word that the MTA is preparing for even more cuts.MTA board members are hinting at that possibility of a $100 metrocard, and shying away from making more service cuts.

The agency's sea of red ink worsened after last week's decision on student metro cards-great for kids, not so great for the MTA's bottom line.

So what's the agency to do? It has to balance its books.

"Certainly fares are going to be on the table at some point. I hope service cuts are now off the table," said Doreen Frasca, MTA board member.

The agency is looking at cutting service on the number 7 line in December, reducing the number of express trains during early morning rush hour.

"The 7 train goes right to Times Square and it's perfect. It's a great train, it's great service but the MTA needs to like really shape it," said one rider.

The decision on the number 7 and cuts to several bus lines this fall will save the MTA almost $4 million, but nobody's happy about it.

"I mean what are we eventually going to come down to; a train or two an hour and a $10 fare. We're in the service business. I'm just amazed that more people aren't screaming about this," said board member Andrew Albert.

Agency officials say their decision on the number 7 has nothing to do with student metro cards and a growing deficit.

Still they predict the next few months won't be easy,

"I wish I could tell you we won't see more of this but as we do cut to the bone, and we're doing that in some of these services, but that's what's going to happen," adds NYC Transit President Tom Prendergast.

As for the bus situation, the M1 and M4 in Manhattan would run less often, starting in September.

More changes would also be in store for 38 bus routes. Right now, these changes are just in the proposal phase.

They have to be approved by the MTA's board on Wednesday.