The MTA is investing over $200 million this year to operate the new Long Island Rail Road service to Grand Central Madison, which is a huge boon for commuters living in the suburbs.
Sunday marked the official debut of the new service, which will operate up to 24 trains an hour, and Governor Kathy Hochul was on hand with MTA leaders at the new station beneath Grand Central Terminal to celebrate.
It has been announced that the additional trains will enhance LIRR service by 41% during the week.
To improve subway and bus service in New York City, the agency should invest similarly, according to Riders Alliance spokesman Danny Pearlstein.
Pearlstein argued that New Yorkers should have access to faster and more reliable public transportation options.
New York can provide those options, and we can afford them, as seen by the construction of Grand Central Madison and the launch of a new service.
Service reductions in New York City have been threatened by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority for over a year because of a budget shortfall caused by a decline in passenger and fare income as a result of the pandemic.
Transit officials anticipate the deficit would be $600 million this year and climb to $1.6 billion by 2026; Hochul has proposed a payroll tax increase in counties served by the MTA as well as leveraging earnings from casinos planned for the city to help plug the hole.
Moreover, Hochul requested that the city increase its annual budget for the MTA by $500 million, an amount that Mayor Eric Adams indicated he did not support.
The Riders Alliance and other proponents of public transportation have urged Mayor Hochul to allocate an extra $300 million to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) in this year’s budget, with the intention that the MTA uses the funds to increase service frequency to every six minutes for the majority of the day.
In light of Governor Hochul’s launch of the expanded service for the Long Island suburbs, Pearlstein argued that it was only right for the city’s millions of riders to get “a measure of equality,” in the form of more regular bus and subway service.
According to MTA documents, the annual operating expense for the additional LIRR service to Grand Central Madison would increase from slightly over $200 million this year to an anticipated $239 million in 2026.
The whole cost of the project was over $11 billion, and it was completed almost a decade late and billions over budget.
One may argue that today is the best day in the previous century for New York’s commuter trains “MTA spokesman Aaron Donovan made this statement.
“We are overjoyed that the MTA will be able to adequately serve the tourists that keep New York City’s economy humming thanks to the substantial investment in Grand Central service.