Changes initiated on the lines last month left riders complaining that they were forced to pay an extra $2 to transfer between the bus and the subway and to walk when service was not available late at night.
With the revisions, riders using value-based MetroCards are now able to switch between the Q83 and Q27 buses and still retain their free subway transfer, according to a press release from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Bus operators on the lines are also handing out transfer tickets upon request.
The other alteration, according to the MTA, is the restoration of late-night Q83 service on Springfield Boulevard between Murdock and Jamaica Avenues. The service runs between midnight and 5 a.m., a time of night when the normal bus now covering that segment, the Q27, will not run.
The Q83 once ran on Springfield Boulevard during the day as well, but on Jan. 4 the MTA transferred that section of the Q83's route to the Q27. Service on the Q27 was then extended on Springfield Boulevard from 114th Avenue to 120th Avenue, a segment that did not previously have bus service.
Its new late-night service not withstanding, the Q83 now runs from Jamaica Center to Springfield Boulevard in Cambria Heights. The Q27 begins in Flushing, turns south in Bayside and then runs through Queens Village along Springfield Boulevard before terminating at 120th Avenue in Cambria Heights.
When the changes were originally made, the MTA said they were intended to improve transportation connections and bus flow between southeast and northeast Queens.
But the altered service meant that some riders transferring from the bus to the subway had to make an extra bus transfer in between, costing them an additional $2. I n addition, the new incarnation of the Q27 did not run below the Long Island Railroad Station in Queens Village after 1:45 a.m., stranding riders getting off the Q83 when it terminated in Cambria Heights.
When his constituents complained, Councilman Leroy Comrie (D-St. Albans) organized a public meeting and asked the MTA to reconsider its plan. He said that while the revisions put into effect Sunday addressed the transfer and late-night service problems, he said he is not yet satisfied.
"We want full restoration of the Q83," Comrie said, explaining that his constituents, especially the elderly, did not want to have to wait at the bus stop to transfer from that line to the Q27.
Comrie said the MTA has promised him that it would continue to study the issue. A spokesman for the MTA said that the revisions made Sunday would remain in effect, for now.
"We'll continue to monitor service," he said.
Reach reporter Michael Morton by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 718-229-0300, Ext. 154.
©2004 Community News Group
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