“Someone’s going to get killed.”
Manhattan Beach residents have been complaining about the glut of riders waiting to board buses on Oriental Boulevard for months, but now that summer has arrived many fear that the situation is growing more acute.
“It’s an untenable situation,” Manhattan Beach Community Group member Judy Baron warned at the organization’s last meeting. “It’s not only our problem. It’s a problem for the people that come here.”
Block watchers say that the Falmouth Street bus stop leaving Manhattan Beach represents the most serious safety issue on hot summer days as throngs of beach-goers flood the narrow corner waiting to board the B1 and B49 buses.
“There’s going to be a situation there unless we get more buses,” community activist Ed Eisenberg complained.
Some in the community believe that a dedicated bus shuttling passengers back and forth between Manhattan Beach and the Brighton Beach subway station would be a great way of alleviating what many view as a dangerous overflow of riders at Falmouth Street.
The MTA removed two other Oriental Boulevard bus stops – one on Hastings Street and a second on Ocean Avenue – a couple of years ago.
Many now want them back.
The situation is so universally abhorred in Manhattan Beach that both the Manhattan Beach Community Group and the rival Manhattan Beach Neighborhood Association believe that the MTA needs to do something to alleviate the crowds.
The MTA, however, maintains that those two bus stops were removed due to “low customer usage,” causing some to cry foul.
“I still think there were some shenanigans going on,” Eisenberg insisted. “That bus stop disappeared when the bike lanes when in. Someone got to someone and it disappeared.”
MTA spokesperson Deirdre Parker said that the agency’s Operations Planning unit and Department of Buses’ Road Control is checking service in the area and will make a determination on the feasibility of increased service.
©2008 Community Newspaper Group
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