Since the MTA announced plans to restore express F train service in Brooklyn, those along the line have either been expressing joy or dismay, depending on which neighborhoods and stops we’re talking about. But one thing that’s for sure, MTA’s lack of community engagement isn’t making things any better.
It was bad enough that the decision was made without first obtaining community input but now, according to DNAinfo, local officials charge that the MTA has yet to address the questions and concerns arising from the plan’s announcement which was back in May. Furthermore, they argue that the plan, which calls for express service between Church Avenue and Jay Street-MetroTech, would actually inconvenience more people than it would help. Riders at Bergen and Carroll Streets, 4th Ave-9th St, Smith-9th St, and 15th St-Prospect Park would get stuck with fewer trains, more crowding, and longer wait times and would be largely disadvantaged just to shave an average of 3.4 minutes a day off of the morning commute time for those along express stops.
In a letter to the MTA, Community Board 6 (which includes Red Hook, Park Slope, Gowanus, Cobble Hill, and Carroll Gardens) wrote, “[W]e have been hearing a loud, growing chorus of voices within our community, all of whom stand to lose a significant amount of F-train service if the proposal as it stands is implemented.” They are hoping to have a “meaningful” dialogue with the transit group before any decisions are finalized and have invited the MTA to attend their transportation committee meeting in September. On the contrary, Councilman David Greenfield and members of South Brooklyn have embraced the change, since they stand to benefit the most from the plan.