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August 14, 2009

Atlantic Yards YES! Bus-riding students NO!!

On June 24th, the board of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority voted 10-2 to let Bruce Ratner put down just $20 million for the Vanderbilt Yard, and pay the $80 million balance over 22 years (never mind that the MTA had appraised the land at $214.5 million in 2005, and that NYC's Finance Department says assessed values of vacant land have increased 260% over the past three years — and as much as 3400% in the Atlantic Yards footprint). Four days later, an across-the-board, double-digit MTA fare hike went into effect.

As part of that fare hike, the MTA is eliminating discounted rides for students commuting by bus into Manhattan.

NY Daily News, MTA nixes express bus for outer borough students who commute to school in Manhattan

Hundreds of city students from the outer boroughs will have to choose between paying more to commute to school in Manhattan this fall or using a longer route. As part of this summer's fare hikes, the MTA quietly cancelled the discount on the express buses that gave students half off.

"To pay $11 a day, five days a week, it's a lot on my family; it's unfair," said Johnathan Trosa, 17, who takes the bus to get to Regis High School by 7:30 a.m. from Throgs Neck, in the Bronx.

"The express bus comes right near my house and drops me off right near my school. ... ," he said. "This makes the commute much more difficult."

The student fare will rise to $5.50 per trip from $2.50. ...

Jeffrey Levine, 48, a social worker whose two daughters will commute this fall from Throgs Neck to the Saint Vincent Ferrer school, will endure a $120 weekly increase.

"It's going to be hard on my family affording full fare," Levine said.

NoLandGrab: Maybe MTA should stand for Millionaires Thoroughly Accommodated.

Posted by eric at August 14, 2009 10:55 AM