After meeting with MTA CEO Jay Walder, State Sen. Martin Malavé Dilan got the agency to agree to remove the B13 from the wide slate of cuts and reroutings planned throughout the city. The senator announced the restoration of the service today in a press release. The original plan was to cut off the bus line, which traverses North Brooklyn, Ridgewood, and East New York, north of the Myrtle-Wyckoff L/M subway hub.
One of the main issues for the B13 was its access to Wyckoff Heights hospital at Stanhope Street. The transit authority argued that the L could replace the bus in parts, but, critics note, the DeKalb station is not handicap-accessible.
The MTA said service would be restored only to the hospital from the direction of Queens. “The B13 provides the only ADA-accessible link between the Wyckoff Hospital and the nearest accessible subway station,” pointed out MTA spokesperson Deirdre Parker, referring to Myrtle-Wyckoff. Patients traveling from points north will have to exit there and take the bus back up Wyckoff Avenue to the hospital.
Barbara Aubel, of Wyckoff Heights’ public affairs office, hadn’t heard of the MTA’s recent decision until informed by BushwickBK, and was excited at the news. She said the hospital “is very pleased to hear that the MTA has rescinded its proposal to shorten the B13 bus line,” and thanked Sen. Dilan for his efforts.
Service reduction revisions systemwide will nix $5.9 million in potential savings for the transit authority. The B13 partial restoration will cost $500,000 per year, and serve an estimated extra 350 weekday riders.
Dilan made public his gratitude, while acknowledging the difficulty facing the MTA. “I’m fully aware that there will be cuts in some places, [but] services such as this portion of the B13 that provide access to medical treatment need to be carefully considered,” said the senator.
In other news, the MTA has announced that instead of extending the V into North Brooklyn to replace the M, the M would supplant the V with service through midtown to Forest Hills. The M color designation will be changed to orange.