We’ve had a bunch of posts in the last year about transit in Red Hook. The B61 bus was cut in half (shorter wait times!), the B77 was eliminated (longer wait times!), and various plans for trolley service have been championed and set aside.
Which made it kind of sad when Bob Diamond, one of the earliest and most stalwart proponents of an above-ground trolley servicing Red Hook, announced earlier this month that he would be hanging ’em up in his long-running fight.
Well, according to a story in today’s Brooklyn Eagle, Mr. Diamond is back at it. Inspired, surely, by the release of $300,000 for a trolley feasibility study (money secured by Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez), he’s back on the advocacy trail.
Coming from someone who commutes to Red Hook every day (a trip that takes between 40 and 75 minutes…), alternative modes of transit can’t be explored soon enough. So let’s stay tuned to how this issue develops, and tip our hats to Mr. Diamond, Congresswoman Velázquez, and anyone else who’s thinking creatively about how to improve the lives of Brooklynites.
The Smith/9th Street Subway station is unique, if nothing else. It’s the closest stop to Red Hook, has incredible views, and rises high in the air over South Brooklyn in a way that says “cool,” “wobbly,” or “strangely foreboding,” depending on whom you ask.
Now the MTA has put out a call for proposals from artists wishing to be considered for a commission for their work at the station. Check out the MTA site for details, or download the RFP (or whatever they’re calling it) here.
Relatively little hub-bub over the drastic recent cuts to bus and subway service, but we did see this piece in the Courier Life Papers:
Bus lines rumbling through Red Hook, and throughout brownstone Brooklyn in general, will see a good deal of restructuring — and in one case, outright elimination, saving the agency a total of $3 million.
The B61 & B77 buses will combine, creating one (super-congested? how reliable?) single way of getting to Red Hook with mass transit. To be continued, for sure…
A couple days ago The Brooklyn Paper ran an interesting piece about proposed student housing at the old Revere Sugar Factory site. Developer Joe Sitt did a quick 180, though, and suggested that what he was really interested in was retail space.
And picking up an old thread (one that, perhaps, never goes away or moves forward), The Brooklyn Eagle today has a piece about the possibility of revived interest in a Brooklyn trolley system given new government evaluation processes:
Could a shift in policy by the Obama administration on trolleys and streetcars benefit efforts to establish streetcars in Brooklyn, and in the city in general?
The answer? A resounding maybe. Check out the article for details.
OK, so it’s not quite a subway line, but how about a return to above-ground rail in Brooklyn?
“Bloomberg the candidate,” as he’s aptly called in the headline to this WNYC piece, included on his laundry list of potential MTA improvements the return of trolleys to several Brooklyn neighborhoods.
So is this just political posturing? Of course. But could it also be a sign of things to come? The Brooklyn Eagle sheds some light on the situation, announcing a $259,000 “feasibilty analysis” by the Department of Transportation for “streetcar routing and service lines in Red Hook, DUMBO and other waterfront communities…”
Rumors about the return of streetcars first started milling when DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan told a Canadian newspaper that she felt they were a “great economic development tool.
Read the article for more info. What do you think? Trolleys a good idea for Red Hook? Any chance they happen? Leave a comment.