The borough of Staten Island and the MTA, as I reported last October, are interested in reactivating the North Shore Rail line in order to bring more transit capacity to the underserved island. To further this project, New York City Transit is hosting a planning alternatives open house this evening. According to a press release from the agency, the Alternatives Analysis Study process begins with the identification of a list of alternatives that will then be narrowed through a series of detailed cost, impact and ridership analyses. This phase is expected to last 12-14 months, and the MTA will then issue a report recommending the locally-preferred alternatives for further development.
The open house tonight runs from 7:15 to 9 p.m. at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center and will allow the public to comment on the various alternatives as well as the goals and objectives of the project. The alternatives, says Transit, include “heavy rail, such as the SIR; light rail, such as Hudson-Bergen Light Rail; and Bus Rapid Transit service, among others.” At some point, as the economy approves and demand dictates, Transit will improve its Staten Island offerings, and this planning meeting is a positive first step.