This morning limited subway service and a bus bridge opened up to New York's commuters, in an attempt to fix some of yesterday's traffic woes. So, how's it working out? Better than yesterday, but not by much.
To alleviate some of the stresses on the roads, the MTA opened up limited subway service, which you can see in this map the MTA posted, still means nothing for anyone looking to get from Brooklyn and Queens to Manhattan, and nothing south of 34th Street. To make up for the lack of subways, MTA set up what it calls a "bus bridge," which shuttles New Yorkers on buses from three Brooklyn pick up points—Barclays Center, MetroTech, and the Hewes Street subway station—into Manhattan. The East River bridges are all open, but will only let high occupancy vehicles with three or more passengers across. That's all an improvement from yesterday, when no subways were operating and there was no attempt to organize anything.
Here's what that looks like, starting with those "bus bridges." Surprise: They can't handle all the people who would be taking the subway. Here's NY1 anchor Pat Kiernan passing along word from the local news channel's transportation guru Jamie Shupak.
Hewes / Barclays / Jay Street "bus bridge" shuttles are crushed with would-be riders, reports @jamieshupak— Pat Kiernan (@patkiernan) November 1, 2012
Others on Twitter have complained of long lines in particular at the Barclay Center location, which The New York Times's Nate Schweber confirms. "To come out and see this is just too much, the lines, it’s cold out," one Brooklyn commuter told him. "I could've just waited until next week."
Even with the three person rule, cars aren't having much better luck. The New York Times's Matt Flegenheimer and John Leland described traffic before 6:30 a.m. as "exceptionally heavy" and after 7 a.m. as a "parking lot." The checkpoints to make sure cars have at least three people, seem to be hurting more than helping, they write. In addition, gas lines are long, as you can see in this Instagram shot from The New York Times's Jim Roberts.
Those taking the subways uptown have it better, with BuzzFeed's Jon Steinberg welcoming back his old friend in this Instagram photo of his stop. Riders on Twitter are thrilled just to be on the trains. "Seeing New Yorkers being rude to each other again over subway seats and getting through entrances just warms my heart," wrote one. But, they won't get commuters very far, as they stop at 34th street. And riders should expect delays, say Flegenheimer and Leland.
Still no word on when lower Manhattan and Brooklyn will get its subway back. But electricity won't be back to the rest of Manhattan until Saturday, says ConEd. Good thing it's almost the weekend?