Today, Rep. Adriano Espaillat led a group of New York State and New York City elected officials for a community discussion for constituents to address New York’s subway crisis following a series of derailments, commuter delays, cancellations, fires and a host of other transit issues.
“Today we are standing with our constituents and commuters from across the city to say enough is enough and it is far time that we work together to find solutions to address the treacherous state of New York City’s subway system,” said Rep. Espaillat. “The stoppages, cancellations, delays, derailments, safety, and cleanliness are all issues that come at a cost and commuters have carried this burden alone for too long. I have addressed these issues with the MTA and created this forum to give commuters a platform to let their voices be heard, because at the end of the day, these transit issues impact their pockets, their livelihood, and their wellbeing the most.”
“Everyone has a role to play – because we all have a stake in the success of the MTA,” said NYC Comptroller Scott M. Stringer. “Behind every breakdown and behind every stalled car, there’s a real human impact on our city. That’s why we can’t delay and we all need to work together, come up with innovative solutions, and step up for New Yorkers. I want to commend Representative Espaillat on holding this important community conversation, because this affects all of us.”
“Uptown Manhattan has already faced more than its share of issues due to the ‘Summer of Hell’ New Yorkers have been talking so much about,” said NYS Senator Marisol Alcantara. “The subway system is not a luxury or a supplement to car travel and the LIRR. It is one of the foundations of New York City and New York State economic competitiveness. It gets millions of workers, students, and everyday people around the city to produce economic value, buy goods, engage in tourism, and otherwise participate in our civic life. When the subway is unreliable, businesses cannot plan on a reliable labor force. When the subway is unreliable, tourists leave our city with feelings of anger and frustration and are less likely to come back. I look forward to working with elected officials at all levels of government and with the MTA to resolve this crisis.”
“This summer has been especially tough for commuters that heavily rely on the subway to get to and from work and around our city each day. Derailments, broken elevators, overcrowding, fires in the tracks, lack of overall service, and proper maintenance have led to sudden cancellations and delays causing chaos in the most transited stations in Upper Manhattan. This is now a matter of public health when riders are stuck in a subway station for hours in these hot temperatures,” said Assemblywoman Carmen De La Rosa. “I commend and join Congressman Espaillat and my colleagues in government as we join together for this important community discussion in an effort to mitigate these ongoing issues plaguing the MTA and look forward to sensible solutions together.”
“From derailments to delays, signal malfunctions to broken elevators, this is a system in severe need of repair,” said NYC Council Transportation Chair Ydanis Rodriguez. “For years, I have been calling on the MTA to put together a plan to upgrade the signals and maintain a quality system. What we see now is a result of years of deferred maintenance coming back to haunt us. We don’t have more time. We need a plan of action now. I stand ready to support these goals in any way I can, as the health of our city depends on it.”
“As we begin to face the harsh reality of the MTA’s transit woes, the most important thing we can do is keep an open dialogue about what matters most to commuters,” said Councilmember Mark Levine. “New Yorkers have a right to a reliable transportation
system that gets them to work on time and our kids to school safely. I applaud Congressman Espaillat and a Comptroller Stringer for hosting this town hall, and I’m grateful for their commitment to keeping the northern Manhattan community involved in our city’s ongoing conversation about how to address New York’s transit issues.”
“As the ‘Summer of Hell’ only grows worse for transit riders, we’re glad to see our representatives step up and start to tackle the crisis head-on,” said Nick Sifuentes, Deputy Director of the Riders Alliance. “Governor Cuomo may be in the driver’s seat when it comes to our subways, but it’s going to take all of us working together to fix public transit. Thanks to Rep. Adriano Espaillat, Comptroller Scott M. Stringer, State Senator Marisol Alcantara, Assemblywoman Carmen De La Rosa, Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, and Councilman Mark Levine for bringing uptown riders together to talk about the challenges we’re all facing as a direct result of our subway meltdown.”
“There’s no good excuse why New Yorkers should suffer from this constantly declining service. Other cities have invested in improving their buses and trains, to improve reliability and safety. New York should be doing the same,” said David Bragdon, Executive Director of TransitCenter, a watchdog group.
The purpose of today’s forum was to allow commuters the opportunity to share their transit stories and for leaders to address concerns and find immediate budgetary solutions and timely repairs. View photos from today’s event.
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