MTA, New York City Transit, and the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) plan to upgrade the M23 cross-town bus route to the Select Bus Service (SBS) standards.
WHEREAS, The MTA, New York City Transit, and the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) have presented a plan to upgrade the M23 cross-town bus route to the Select Bus Service (SBS) standards, to improve the speed, safety, and efficiency for travelers on 23rd Street, from river-to-river; and
WHEREAS, Community Board Five identified necessary improvements to the 23rd Street bus services in its District Needs Statement; and
WHEREAS, DOT has identified four intersections along 23rd Street as Vision Zero priority intersections, and has defined 23rd Street as a Vision Zero priority route; and
WHEREAS, Currently the M23 bus route serves approximately 15,000 daily riders, and offers connections to the C, E, F, M, N, R, and numbers 1 and 6 subway lines, as well as PATH service to New Jersey; and
WHEREAS, Currently the M23 bus route serves large residential communities along its full route, including areas far from subway lines; and
WHEREAS, The MTA and DOT have conducted a necessary community engagement process, surveying over 500 passengers and 182 businesses along the M23 corridor; and
WHEREAS, Key elements of the 23rd Street SBS plan are a bus priority system with dedicated bus lanes to speed bus movement, improved stop spacing and an off-board fare collection system to reduce loading and unloading times for buses, digital countdown clocks to improve commuter information about bus arrivals, and altered parking regulations to prioritize bus service and commercial loading along 23rd Street; and
WHEREAS, In consultation with members of Community Boards 4, 5, and 6, the MTA and DOT have identified three bus stops that could be removed from the M23 bus route without significant disruption to users, including two stops in CB5 that are less than 500 feet away from remaining stops; and
WHEREAS, DOT has identified no-standing regulations along 23rd Street that are unnecessary and can be removed in combination with the creation of the SBS bus lane, more than offsetting the loss of curbside access along portions of the route; and
WHEREAS, DOT has proposed four new turn restrictions that will improve throughput along 23rd Street and decrease vehicle-pedestrian conflicts along the route that are potentially dangerous; and
WHEREAS, Community Board Five's Transportation and Environment Committee offered suggestions to further improve this Select Bus Service proposal, including the elimination of private vehicle parking along 23rd Street; therefore be it
RESOLVED, Community Board Five supports the MTA and DOT's proposal to upgrade the M23 to SBS service standards, and further recommends that DOT look into additional methods to prevent double-parking along 23rd Street, potentially including new signage and better enforcement of commercial loading zones along 23rd Street.