MTA Will Talk to Public
There is a light at the end of the tunnel. The tunnel is the long dark path of silence. The light is the sudden ability to get some dialogue. MTA has finally agreed to loop the L train using community into a dialogue concerning the Canarsie Tube closing to repair Superstorm Sandy damage, which is to happen a year or so in the future.
Just under a month ago an MTA insider leaked to the press that this link between Manhattan and Brooklyn could be shut down completely anywhere from 1 year to 3 years. The North Brooklyn community quickly went into proactive mode and formed the L-Train Coalition. Made up of local business leaders, chambers of commerce, community organizations, and elected officials, this group has shown itself to be a force to be listened to.
At the L-Train Coalition meeting on February 24th Minna Elias, Congresswoman Maloney’s NY Chief of Staff, shared that it was thanks to the creation of the L-Train Coalition and the all out media coverage of its previous meeting received, that the MTA opened communications channels with the elected officials.
On February 25th during the New York State Budget Hearing concerning the MTA, Senator Daniel Squadron strongly requested, “The MTA participate in a Town Hall on this issue in this quarter, in the next couple of months even if the plans are not finalized.We’re going to bring other agencies in the solution isn’t going to be the MTA’s alone.”
MTA Chairman Prendergas responded, “You have that commitment.” He then apologized for not having some of that outreach before.
The L-Train Coalition will soon have a website, social media outlets, and possibly even an app. Though it is started in North Brooklyn they are connecting to groups on the Manhattan side of the L. Felice Kirby, an organizer of the L-Train Coalition spoke of how she is inspired by the commitment within this community. The L-Train Coalition is determined to keep the pressure on so all who use the L train will get comprehensive answers and the best solutions for navigating the looming shut down.