Dear Chairman Foye,
Our existing transit system is in a state of disrepair and disinvestment. We applaud the MTA leadership for advancing an ambitious 2020-2024 Capital Program. The ongoing discussions of new funding sources to pay for the capital program and system modernization gives us hope that the existing transit system will be transformed in the coming years.
Providing transit riders a better system also requires looking ahead to the next generation of infrastructure projects to help New York continue to thrive. Transit deserts in the outer boroughs continue to add strain to commuters, limit the potential for new economic hubs, and reduce access to opportunity for outer borough residents.
Transit is the great equalizer, and more outer borough transit is vital. As such, we request that the MTA start to evaluate the Triboro Line proposal advanced by the Regional Plan Association by funding a formal study. The Triboro would take advantage of an existing freight right-of-way. This line, which runs 24 miles from Co-op City in the Bronx south to Bay Ridge in Brooklyn, would provide a critical north-south transit solution to improve the transit network, reduce commuting times for residents, and build-up the quality of life for outer borough residents.
RPA has completed preliminary research, conservatively estimating that the line would initially serve 100,000 daily riders with a price tag of between $1 and $2 billion. A formal study now needs to be completed to determine the opportunities, challenges, and feasibility of the Triboro Line. The study should also take into account the need to expand freight capacity in the region and how best to co-mingle services without reducing freight movement or limiting freight expansion goals. We are calling on the MTA to initiate such a study, and are willing to support in any way we can.
Thank you for your leadership and commitment to enacting a sustainable and equitable transit system for all New Yorkers. We stand ready to assist you and together we can give New Yorkers the type of transit system that is worthy of our great city.
Tom Wright, President, Regional Plan Association
State Senator Julia Salazar District 18
State Senator Zellnor Myrie District 20
State Senator Diane Savino District 23
State Senator Luis Sepulveda District 32
State Senator Gustavo Rivera District 33
State Senator Alessandra Biaggi District 34
State Senator Jamaal Bailey District 36
Assemblymember Robert Carroll District 44
Assemblymember Felix Ortiz, Assistant Speaker District 51
Assemblymember Latrice Walker District 55
Assemblymember Michael Benedetto District 82
NYC Council Member Margaret Chin District 1
NYC Council Speaker Corey Johnson District 3
NYC Council Member Andrew Cohen District 11
NYC Council Member Peter Koo District 20
NYC Council Member Barry Grodenchik District 23
NYC Council Member Robert Holden District 30
NYC Council Member Donovan Richards District 31
NYC Council Member Antonio Reynoso District 34
NYC Council Majority Leader Laurie A. Cumbo District 35
NYC Council Member Carlos Menchaca District 38
NYC Council Member Justin Brannan District 43
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams
New York League of Conservation Voters
Tri-State Transportation Campaign
Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce