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Archive for the tag 'united chinese association of brooklyn'

Photo Courtesy Of Justin Brannan

Photo Courtesy Of Justin Brannan

ONLY ON BENSONHURST BEAN: Despite the push by a local coalition urging the return of weekend service on the X28 express bus, the MTA has informed Bensonhurst Bean that service restoration is highly unlikely.

The X28 saw weekend service slashed entirely from the route in June of 2010 due to budget constraints. As we reported on Monday, a coalition of local groups and elected officials – including Councilman Vincent Gentile and Assemblyman William Colton, Bensonhurst West End Community Council, People’s Coalition of Coney Island, and more – are demanding that the MTA restore weekend service to compensate for the year-long closure of the Montague tunnel, which carries the R train into Manhattan and is expected to wreak havoc on commutes to and from western Brooklyn when it takes effect.

But the MTA told Bensonhurst Bean that there’s insufficient demand for the line to justify the expense, especially since a large stretch of the X28 ridership are served by the D line. Towards the western stretch of the route, former X28 weekend passengers are served by an X17 bus stop at 86th Street near the Gowanus Expressway, a stop created specifically to compensate for the loss of X28 service.

“The weekend X28 route had low ridership (760 customers) and duplicated D subway service,” MTA spokesperson Deirdre Parker wrote in an email to Bensonhurst Bean. “Many other former X28 customers have started using the DFNQ subways on weekends, in some cases transferring from local buses.”

Overall, though, the service is just too expensive to restore when riders have other options.

“On a cost per passenger basis, express bus service is far more costly to operate than either local bus service or subway service,” Parker noted.

Gentile’s office has little concern about the expense required to bring weekend service back, saying the agency has managed to find funds in the past.

“The MTA has a knack for suddenly finding money behind filing cabinets and underneath old mattresses. This year Albany gave the MTA $40 million more than they asked for. It would make sense, first and foremost, to put some of that $40 million towards restoring services that were cut,” said Justin Brannan, Gentile’s director of communications and legislative affairs.

Brannan added that seniors and the disabled in neighborhoods like Bath Beach or Bensonhurst’s West End will continue to suffer as long as the MTA drags its feet. Those neighborhoods, along with Sea Gate and western Coney Island, were once served on weekends by the X28 and now have to take a bus to a subway to get to Manhattan, rather than their one-ride commute.

“For seniors and the disabled, getting to Manhattan on the weekend from Bath Beach, Bensonhurst, Dyker Heights, Sea Gate or Coney Island without the x28 is like running the gauntlet,” Branna said. “The MTA needs to understand that people truly relied on this weekend express bus service to get where they had to go – let’s stop acting like the weekend x28 was a luxury.”

Photo Courtesy Of Justin Brannan

Photo Courtesy Of Justin Brannan

Councilman Vincent Gentile and Assemblyman William Colton are joining forces with a slew of community groups to bring the x28 express bus service back on the weekends. According to a press release, Gentile and Colton believe that restoration of weekend x28 service will go a long way in helping commuters deal with the year-long closure of the Montague tunnel, which carries the R train into Manhattan.

Gentile drafted a letter to MTA Executive Director Tom Pendergast, calling for a return of the express service, which covers Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, Seagate and Coney Island.

“Southern Brooklyn residents who travel to Manhattan each day already have a long and difficult commute. Now, with the news that the Montague tunnel will be closed for at least a year, we need to make every viable alternative available. And the x28 weekend service is an important piece to that puzzle,” Gentile said in a press release. “Without the x28, seniors and the disabled who are unable to climb the stairs to the elevated subway are basically cut-off from Manhattan on weekends… and that is unacceptable.”

Echoing these words was Assemblyman Colton, who is also calling for the return of the x28, alongside a roster of community organizations that includes the Bensonhurst West End Community Council, Marlboro Residents Association, St. Francis Cabrini Church, United Chinese Association of Brooklyn, People’s Coalition of Coney Island, and Most Precious Blood Church.

“Neighborhoods such as Bensonhurst and Bath Beach need more options for public transit to Manhattan, especially on the weekends. Frequently, the MTA schedules repairs on numerous subway lines for Saturday and Sunday, which causes delays and infrequency in service. Sometimes, certain trains do not run at all, or certain stations do not have service. By restoring weekend service to the x28, people who have trouble getting to the subway will have another means to travel to Manhattan,” Colton said in the release.

You can see the entire letter from Gentile to Pendergast below:

The following is a press release from the office of City Councilman David Greenfield:

Greenfield Invites Residents & Businesses to Clean Up Bay Parkway

Public Welcome to Attend Meeting on Thursday with DSNY Officials

Brooklyn, NY – In response to a host of quality of life issues and concerns along Bay Parkway, Councilman David G. Greenfield is hosting a town hall meeting on Thursday in Bensonhurst in partnership with the Brooklyn Federation of Italian American Organizations and the United Chinese Association of Brooklyn. Officials from the city Department of Sanitation will be on hand to answer questions, discuss specific concerns and devise strategies to combat the issues along Bay Parkway moving forward. In recent months, Greenfield has received numerous complaints from residents and business owners regarding issues such as large trucks and commercial vehicles parked on the street overnight, trash and debris illegally dumped along the sidewalk on a regular basis and more. Continue Reading »

A plan for newly drawn boundaries has created a 51% Asian state Assembly district made up of parts of Sunset Park, Dyker Heights and Bensonhurst.

Asian-American groups had promoted a district to help enfranchise a community that has grown 46% in the last ten years, writes the Daily News.

“We love it,” said Steve Chung, head of the head of the United Chinese Association of Brooklyn. “We would like to elect someone who can represent us, support us, and know our interests and our needs.

“It can really motivate a lot of Asian people. Before they might feel reluctant [to participate in politics] and I don’t blame them,” he said. “They have a better chance to win now.”

The plan also redraws state Senate districts. The Senate maps, drawn up by the GOP dominated state Senate, create a “super Jewish” district in Borough Park, Midwood and parts of Flatbush, giving Republicans the upper hand among the district’s conservative Orthodox Jewish voters.

A reader sent us this photo over the weekend. It shows local high school students, neighbors and even small children preparing to take the cleanliness of our streets into their own hands on Saturday. Continue Reading »

The following is a press release from Assemblyman William Colton:

 

ASSEMBLYMAN COLTON ORGANIZES MAJOR BENSONHURST NEIGHBORHOOD CLEANUP EFFORT WITH HELP OF LOCAL YOUTH GROUPS

 

OVER A HUNDRED TEENAGERS ARE EXPECTED

 

TO PARTICIPATE IN THE CLEANUP OF 86TH STREET

 

Date: Saturday, November 12, 2011

 

Time: 10 A.M. – 1 P.M.

 

Place: 86th Street, from 19th Avenue to 26th Avenue, and adjacent streets    

 

In response to neighborhood concerns about cleanliness on 86th Street in Bensonhurst, Assemblyman William Colton (D-Brooklyn) has organized a major neighborhood cleanup project with the help of local youth groups on Saturday, November 12th, 2011. Members of Our Lady of Grace Church Youth Team, students from Midwood High School, students from Brooklyn Technical High School, students from New Utrecht High School, members of Bensonhurst Cluster Youth Ministry, members of Our Lady of Grace Boys & Girls Scouts troops, members of the United Chinese Association of Brooklyn Youth Club, and NYC Comptroller John Liu’s Youth Action Team all have signed up to enlist in this major and important civic effort.

 

“ I continue to be proud and amazed by the commitment of our neighborhood’s young people. They understand that keeping our neighborhood clean keeps our quality of life great to the benefit of all residents,” stated Assemblyman Colton. “It continues to be my pleasure to bring all of these youth groups together to commit to participating in an excellent and beneficial community service,” Colton added.

 

The scheduled cleanup will be the third cleanup initiative undertaken by Assemblyman Colton’s youth group coalition. Previously, hundreds of teenagers led successful cleanup efforts on Kings Highway and on Avenue U.

 

Additionally, the Department of Sanitation has indicated that they will supply the groups with tools to assist in the cleanup effort. For more information about this cleanup effort, please contact Assemblyman Colton’s community office at (718) 236-1598.

Assemblyman William Colton represents Assembly District 47, which includes Bensonhurst, as well as parts of Gravesend and Midwood