L, 3 train straphangers demand MTA upgrades

BROWNSVILLE - Thousands of Brownsville and East New York commuters complain that taking mass transit in their neighborhoods is a costly headache.

The 3 train runs above the L train at Livonia Avenue, where straphangers say a sign that promises an "overpass" to get from one to the other actually involves a two-block walk."You have to totally come out of the train station, go downstairs, go back on the street and climb back up afterwards," says a commuter. Another straphanger added that they still have to pay two fares.

Frustrated resident Randy Hudson started a community council and has collected 6,000 signatures to hopefully nudge the MTA into making upgrades. "We need handicapped elevators because there are a lot of physically challenged people within the community," Hudson says.

Hudson also says that they pay subway fares like everyone else, but Manhattan seems to consistently get the most transit improvements. The MTA declined to comment on the claim.With the defeat of Mayor Michael Bloomberg's congestion pricing plan in Albany Monday, it's possible that many promised upgrades across the city won't come to fruition anytime soon. The city lost $354 million in federal funding when state lawmakers failed to pass the plan that would have charged drivers $8 to enter Manhattan below 60th Street during certain times. Truck drivers would have paid $21.

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