City makes Jay Street busway in Downtown Brooklyn permanent after one-year pilot

The Jay Street busway will completely stay on the busy Downtown Brooklyn thoroughfare after a year-long pilot, Mayor Invoice de Blasio introduced Friday.

“Downtown Brooklyn deserves better bus service, and the Jay Street busway has already improved commutes for thousands of residents, workers, and students who rely on it every day,” de Blasio mentioned in a Nov. 19 assertion. “It’s time to make it permanent – and build on this progress to make public transit faster, safer, and more reliable for riders in every borough.”

The town’s Division of Transportation (DOT) launched the Jay Street busway in August 2020, banning non-public automobile through-traffic from on the 0.4-mile stretch from Tillary to Livingston Streets on weekdays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Bus speeds in 2021 went up by as a lot as 47% in comparison with pre-pandemic ranges in 2019, however have began to gradual once more in comparison with a peak 2020, as extra drivers returned to the enterprise district, in keeping with an October presentation by DOT to native neighborhood and enterprise representatives referred to as the group advisory board.

Bus speeds have declined to a sluggish common of seven.9 miles per hour throughout the 5 Boroughs in October, current stats by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority detailed.

The busway serves some 47,000 straphangers throughout seven bus routes operated by the state-controlled MTA, together with the B26, B54, B57, B61, B62, B65 and B67.

“We’re transforming Downtown Brooklyn, getting cars out of the picture and focusing on our sustainable transportation future, transit and cycling,” mentioned DOT Commissioner Hank Gutman in an announcement.

Jay Street can be a key connector to the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges for cyclists pedaling throughout the East River, which turned much more essential when the DOT opened the brand new Brooklyn Bridge bike lane in September. 

The quantity of car site visitors that has spilled over onto surrounding streets has been “minimal” on account of the busway, in keeping with the DOT presentation.

Native automobile entry continues to be allowed however drivers should get onto Jay Street from aspect streets and there are cameras at each ends of the busway to catch scofflaws.

DOT issued a mean of 60 fines a day in August, in keeping with the company, however the space stays a hotspot of unlawful parking, together with staff of the various authorities headquarters and courts misusing their official placards to park, DOT acknowledged in the presentation final month, saying “enforcement challenges remain.”

In truth, NYPD leaves no less than one squad automobile parked illegally in the northbound aspect of the red-painted bus lane exterior MetroTech Heart so repeatedly that it may be seen in DOT’s personal pictures launched as a part of the announcement.

A cop cruiser is parked illegally in the Jay Street busway exterior MetroTech Heart.NYC DOT

Jay Street was the primary new busway pilot the town put in as a part of 5 Mayor Invoice de Blasio promised in summer 2020 following the success of the 14th Street busway in Manhattan a 12 months prior. 

The town’s unique busway — even when it doesn’t have that label — is simply across the nook on the Fulton Mall, the place site visitors has been restricted in favor of buses for the reason that Nineteen Eighties, when metropolis officers put in the bus-only hall to revitalize the neighborhood and boost the shopping strip.

4 out of these pilots hizzoner promised in the course of the pandemic have turn out to be a actuality, together with on 181st Street in Washington Heights; Foremost Street in Flushing, Queens; and most not too long ago, Jamaica and Archer avenues in downtown Jamaica, Queens.

The proposed Fifth Avenue busway hit roadblocks a number of occasions over the previous 12 months, with DOT at first watering down its personal proposal in the face of opposition from luxurious enterprise pursuits alongside the enduring road, after which punting it till after the vacations and after de Blasio leaves workplace, Streetsblog reported.

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