Bus Service In New York City Needs More Attention

The city comptroller’s office released a report stating that the quality of bus service is being neglected.

On any given day, the buses in the five boroughs of New York City carry more than two million people each day—more than the combined numbers of people who use the Long Island Railroad, New Jersey Transit, PATH and Metro-North. However, despite the fact that a lot more people rely on New York City’s buses, the quality of service is not given first priority.

New York City’s buses have a lot of problems. For example, buses operated by the Metropolitan Transit Authority travel at an average speed of 8 miles per hour, which is very slow. Bus service is generally not as reliable as it should be. Many of the routes do not reflect commuting patterns. Where there should be bus service, or more reliable bus service, there is none. Buses operate differently at different times of the day and night. This is bad for commuters who have to use buses during times when bus service isn’t that frequent.

Throughout the past 8 years, the amount of people using buses has declined, especially in Manhattan. People are more likely to choose subways over buses. However, there are many areas throughout the five boroughs where there are no subways nearby, and the most convenient and practical option is to utilize a bus.

Surprisingly, there is more job growth in the boroughs outside of Manhattan, though many of the neighborhoods with the most jobs available have the least bus routes and/or the most unreliable bus routes.

All kinds of people board buses, though the majority of people who use buses tend to be from more vulnerable demographics. For example, people who use buses tend to be old, poor, foreign born and from minority groups. This is one of the reasons why the problems with the buses are not given first priority.

The Second Avenue subway station cost $4.4 billion dollars to build. If this feat could be done, then it is definitely within the realm of possibility for bus service to improve and for new lines to be created.

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