NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Elected officials and transit advocates will be back on the subway for a second day Friday asking riders how to improve service following recent track fires, derailments, power outages and other delays.
It’s part of what’s being called the 24-Hour Riders Respond Transit Tour.
New York state and city politicians rode the rails for 12 hours straight Thursday, listening to grievances from riders. They’ll return to the subway again from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday to listen to straphangers and they’ve already gotten an earful.
“We need more trains,” commuter Edleen Hardy said. “We don’t have enough trains, they are too crowded.”
The goal is to become a voice for the commuters at an upcoming City Council hearing. Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez is the chairman of the City Council transportation committee.
“I’ll personally use this information for the hearing on the 8th,” he said.
Assemblyman Jeffery Dinowitz chairs the committee that has oversight of the MTA.
“The city and the state have to work together as a team,” he said. “We don’t want to see finger pointing and blaming each other.”
Wearing a sandwich board, Pat Debird voiced her concerns about broken elevators and escalators.
“There’s also no PA system at 190th Street so when there were two smoke conditions last year, nobody knew what was going on,” she said. “We’re very worried. It’s a safety issue more than anything.”
Beyond this two-day tour, riders want action from politicians.
“I’m glad that they’re asking for information,” commuter Eugene Douglas said. “I think ultimately what matters is what they do with it.”
For most riders, the major concern was rising transportation costs. Both city and state officials say there’s a need to find funding elsewhere to make improvements, but it’s not yet clear where they’ll find the money.