Straphangers Campaign picks annual 'winners' of Schleppie, Pokie awards

If you are not in a rush, many New Yorkers say take the bus.

The NYPIRG Straphangers Campaign and Transportation Alternatives on Tuesday gave out the annual awards for poor bus service in New York City.

The 14th annual "Pokey" award for slowest local bus route in New York City went to the M66 crosstown. It had the slowest bus speed out of the 35 lines surveyed, clocking in at 3.1 miles per hour at noon on a weekday.

The award is a golden snail on a pedestal, and is based on the speed of rides recorded by Straphangers staff and volunteers on 35 routes. Lines were selected because they had high ridership or were historically slow Manhattan crosstown routes.

The winner of the 2015 Schleppie is a tie between the M1 and the combined M101/102/103, both with a dismal 37 percent of buses arriving with big gaps in service or bunched together. The award is based on official transit statistics that measure how well buses keep to scheduled intervals. This is the 10th year the Schleppie has been given out.

"In the realm of unreliable bus service, the M1 is the king, and the local M101/102/103 is the queen," Transportation Alternatives executive director Paul Steely White said. "Their unhappy subjects, the riders, must endure the tyranny of frequent and long waits, followed by a parade of buses that pass by in bunches, like a herd of lumbering elephants."

The number of bus routes awarded Schleppies increased a worrisome 68 percent in the last year, jumping from 19 Schleppie routes in 2014 to 32 Schleppie routes in 2015. Schleppies go to any route with an average wait assessment greater than 20 percent of buses arriving with big gaps in service or bunched together. Transit officials found a statically significant worsening in wait assessment during the first six months of 2015.

To see the full report and for all the stats and information on each line in each borough, visit Straphangers.org/pokeyaward/15/.
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