Spotted At First Avenue: “Official Neglect”

I am not a marketing whiz. I leave that to the experts. But placing such a polemic at the entrance of Canarsie-bound L train, well, strikes me as being misguided at best. We have problems of our own. Believe you me when I waited for the mighty Crosstown Local (which was more fragrant than usual) last night— for over 30 minutes— at Metropolitan Avenue— I found this missive wretchedly comical. You want to see neglect, Upper West Siders? Why not cross the pond and see the not-so-benign neglect that our city has seen to lavish upon us G trainers.

21st Street, Long Island City, Queens

Taken March 6, 2010.

This sign is unnecessary. When foul-smelling muck is dripping from the ceiling people will inevitably avoid the edge of the platform until it is absolutely necessary. That is, when the G train finally arrives. Taken July 4, 2010.

If my memory serves me correctly this tile work was done in the late 90’s. As of July 4, 2010 it looks like ass. I skipped Nassau Avenue. Here’s why: because there is a busted water main and it makes the Norman Avenue entrance smell like dead fish. But back to the purpose of this post:

  • Token booths being unattended
  • Dysfunctional Metrocard machines
  • Non-functional panopticons (Lest anyone from the Upper West Side is reading this: the ones on the L and G appear to be fully functional. Exactly what effect this has as a crime deterrent has yet to be determined.)
  • I know of not a single person who has attempted to use the intercoms in North Brooklyn. It is popularly considered as an exercise in futility. (If anyone has please contact me via email at: missheather (at) thatgreenpointblog (dot) com. I’d love to hear your story.)

These conditions (and worse) are taken for granted in the hinterlands (READ: the outer boroughs), my uptown friends. We often have to go above ground in order to interface with a station agent. Occasionally we encounter an actual human being.

To conclude: the grievances our friends at 86 Street have stated are pretty much par for the course. They are nothing special. These people are simply better organized. Perhaps a few G,L,J,M,7 (to name a few) trainers would like to make their voices heard at this meeting?

MTA Public Meeting
July 13, 2010 starting at 6:00 p.m.
Cooper Union
7 East 7 Street
New York, New York 10009

Let’s show them, Mayor Mike, et. al. the true meaning of neglect!

Miss Heather


5 Comments on Spotted At First Avenue: “Official Neglect”

  1. SGI on Mon, 5th Jul 2010 6:43 pm
  2. It’s commendable on your part; but, I don’t know why you bother posting any information about MTA hearings. Thinking that anything will be accomplished by voicing your opinion is nothing more than the proverbial exercise in futility. The proceedings are conducted in a manner similar to a Soviet-era peoples’ court – you can state your case; but, you will be removed by the police if your statements are coherent. Don’t disrupt the status quo. The MTA Board, by virtue of its autonomous status, is answerable to noone but themselves.

    Re the 21st-Van Alst station, I can personally attest that the conditions there have remained the same since 1988. There hasn’t been any preventitive maintenance performed at this station since at least the late 1970’s-early 1980’s. That station is so low on the MTA’s priority list for renovations that it doesn’t even qualify to be described as the red headed step-child of the system. MTA, at one time, toyed with the idea of permanently closing the station.

    There also were contemporary newspaper accounts, about the sad physical state the station, which were reported. When confronted with this information, MTA only paid cursory lip service about scheduled repairs and renovations – Capital Projects schedules, funding, fiscal difficulties due to reduced revenue streams caused by declining ridership, blah, blah, blah… Sound familiar? Different cast of actors, same script. You’re not only paying income tax to fund the MTA; you’re paying surcharges on your Con Ed bill to subsidize mass transit. Twenty two years later, we’re still waiting for the MTA’s Infrastructure Division to start work. the sun will go supernova before that happens.

  3. walrustaco on Tue, 6th Jul 2010 9:28 am
  4. Was just looking at the official G-train facts (reliability, etc.) and I find it hard to believe: At night you wait at least half hour, during the day it is 15 at least minutes. The reason uptown is doing well is that the more people complain, the more things will get done. Me thinks we need to complain louder to get what we deserve: a normal subway.

  5. feinsodville on Tue, 6th Jul 2010 11:59 am
  6. The Nassau Avenue G train station is especially bad. Lots of rats seem to live on the downtown side; the MTA does construction during rush hour, which slows things down even more; I’ve occasionally been unable to enter at the Norman Avenue entrance because an MTA worker was cleaning the turnstile during rush hour; and so on.

    Recently, the G train didn’t come for forty minutes. There must’ve been over 100 people on the uptown platform. And the station agent claimed to know nothing about the delay. I finally gave up and walked to the L train at Bedford Avenue.

    Oddly enough, even the email alerts from the MTA for the G train are horrible. I woke up one morning to see I had an email that the G train was severely delayed because a signal problem. I took it anyway, and it was fine. About seven hours later, I got another email telling me they’d fixed the problem. It made no sense whatsoever.

    On the plus side, I’m convinced one reason why Greenpoint is still relatively affordable compared to the rest of Brooklyn is because of the G train.

  7. SGI on Tue, 6th Jul 2010 2:54 pm
  8. All the complaining, at whatever decibel level, did nothing to make the MTA reverse its idiotic decision to terminate the G at Court Square.

  9. rowan on Tue, 6th Jul 2010 4:33 pm
  10. SGI answers a question in my mind. I have always wondered why 21st-Van Alst stayed open. Please correct me if I’m wrong but it seems virtually nonfunctional. Rarely do I see anyone exiting or entering the train from that stop. If it closed, who would be inconvenienced? Most folks get off/on at Court Square, or further down Jackson, are using the 7 and/or B62 buses. Would it have saved any money to close the station (money that could be directed elsewhere) since the MTA could care less about maintaining it.

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