Mayor Bill de Blasio announced 20 miles of new bus service across five boroughs that will help 750,000 New Yorkers safely return to work after the coronavirus shutdown.
“This is a major step,” de Blasio said Monday at his first in-person press conference last month at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
“More service equals less crowding equals more health and safety,” de Blasio said.
The announcement includes five new trial busways like the one along 14th Street in Manhattan. The corridors, totaling 3.5 miles, will roll out starting this month. The first will be Main Street in Queens in June, Jamaica Avenue in Queens and 5th Avenue in Manhattan in July, Jay Street in Brooklyn in August and 181st Street in Manhattan in October.
The 14th Street pilot busway project in Manhattan will become permanent, de Blasio said.
“It is a clear success,” de Blasio said.
The city is also adding 16.5 miles of new bus lanes starting with E. 14th Street in Manhattan and 149th Street in The Bronx in June, Hylan Boulevard in Staten Island in July, and Merrick Boulevard in Queens in August.
The MTA had called for three times as many bus lane miles as the mayor announced on Monday.
The Staten Island Ferry service will increase every 20 minutes during rush hour starting Monday afternoon to match ridership growth, de Blasio said. The ferries will have social distancing markers as well as free hand sanitizer and face coverings.
The city will dispatch 800 school safety agents to hand out face coverings at subway stations, de Blasio said.
The mayor vowed to take the subway sometime soon, following Governor Andrew Cuomo’s planned trip on the rails Monday morning.
“I think it’s really important to show people that really important work is being done on subways and buses to keep people safe,” de Blasio said.
Alternate side parking is suspended through June 21.