Residents say MTA, DOT ignore concerns over B82 Select Bus Service

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FLATLANDS -

Some residents living near Kings Highway and Avenue K say they believe the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and city Department of Transportation have been ignoring their concerns regarding bus service.

For years, the agencies have been developing B82 Select Bus Service, but residents say they have not been part of the process.

Raymond Boyce has lived for 34 years at the corner of Kings Highway and Avenue K. One day, without any notice, he claims contractors started installing ticket kiosks in front of his home.

The MTA says changing B82 Select Bus Service will allow passengers to board and get to their destinations faster, as well as make streets safer for crossing. However, residents who came out Tuesday with City Council Member Jumaane Williams say the MTA and DOT have not talked to them about the plan.

While there were community outreach meetings, residents say those were held in churches and libraries out of their neighborhood. Williams believes it would be better if the bus stop was moved farther down, in front of Kings Highway and Flatbush Avenue.

The DOT says it has done extensive outreach efforts since 2015.

"With regards to the new bus stop Avenue K and Kings Highway, which was requested by the MTA, DOT believes that the new route will contribute to safer bus movement, alleviate traffic at Flatbush Ave, and reduce bus travel times," the DOT said in a statement.

The MTA released its own statement that says: "This plan was tailored in direct response to feedback from customers and elected officials, including moving local bus service back to Flatbush and Flatlands Av [sic] and other changes that preserve the benefits of Select Bus Service. When this new service starts up next month, trips will be faster and neighborhoods will benefit from the environmental and economic benefits of a pedestrian-friendly service that gives people a new alternative to driving."

The service was expected to launch in July but was held off due to community pushback. It's now slated to start some time next month.

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