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May 23, 2012

More Trains, But No Free MetroCards or RPP in Barclays Center Plan

Streetsblog
by Noah Kazis

The MTA will be adding extra transit service on Barclays Center game nights. But past promises of free or discounted MetroCards for arena-goers did not materialize in the transportation demand management plan revealed yesterday by developer Forest City Ratner, which local advocates are calling “too little, too late.”

Under the plan to reduce the number of people who drive to the arena, developed by Sam Schwartz for Forest City, more 4 and Q trains will run at the end of a Nets game, according to Norman Oder at Atlantic Yards Report. LIRR trains will run from to Jamaica every 15 minutes, rather than every 25. Nine subway lines already run directly to the now-renamed Atlantic Avenue/Barclays Center station.
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But the plan goes neither as far as the developer had promised, nor as far as arena neighbors and sustainable transportation advocates would like. “The plan released today doesn’t even include the free subway fare for Nets ticketholders promised in 2009,” said Kate Slevin, executive director of the Tri-State Transportation Campaign and a member of the BrooklynSpeaks coalition, in a press release. As recently as last year, free or discounted transit fares were being discussed by Forest City Ratner. Now it looks as if riders will have to pay full freight.

Slevin also pointed to the cost to the MTA of providing additional service on event nights. “The TDM assumes the public will bear the cost of adding transit capacity after arena events,” she said. “Instead, the developer should be paying for service enhancements.”

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Related coverage...

The Brooklyn Paper, A rail solution for Nets games

Forest City Ratner also said it has abandoned a plan announced last year to offer free subway rides to ticket-holders on game nights, saying technological glitches are standing in the way.

“We did look at that but the technology isn’t there,” Schwartz said.

NoLandGrab: Yes, we can put a man on the moon, but we can't get MetroCards into the hands of Barclays Center patrons.

Posted by eric at May 23, 2012 5:06 PM