Today’s news:

Blind eye in Manhattan Beach - NYC Transit is cool with Oriental Boulevard’s hot summer rush

Manhattan Beach residents complain that overcrowding is making waiting for a bus on Oriental Boulevard a dangerous game.

But try telling that to NYC Transit.

Despite persistent complaints to the contrary, NYC Transit maintains that it is unaware of any problems along Oriental Boulevard.

“Our Operations Planning unit is not aware of any overcrowding conditions at any stop in the area,” spokesperson Deirdre Parker told The Bay News this week.

In addition, the spokesperson said that there are no overcrowding complaints on record with NYC Transit’s Bus Customer Relations unit.

Manhattan Beach residents believe that restoring two westbound bus stops at Hastings Street and Ocean Avenue would alleviate congestion at the westbound bus stop on Falmouth Street.

According to NYC Transit, the westbound B1/B49 bus stop at Hastings Street was eliminated back on October 17, 1996 and the westbound bus stop at Ocean Avenue was removed on September 14, 2005 – the latter coming after receiving a request from New York State Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz.

Parker said that NYC Transit did not object to the revocation of the westbound B1/B49 bus stops because the proximately of other bus stops along the route conformed to existing guidelines.

The bus stop at Ocean Avenue was one block, or 350 feet, from the preceding stop at Falmouth Street while the Falmouth Street stop was three blocks, or 880 feet, from another westbound bus stop at Dover Street.

NYC Transit also maintains that the bus stop at Ocean Avenue was “lightly used.”

Regardless, Cymbrowitz’s office is denying that the assemblyman ever made a request to have the Ocean Avenue bus stop removed.

“Cymbrowitz never requested that,” Chief of Staff Ozzy Heymann told this newspaper. “There’s no record of ever making a request.”

Whether or not the eliminated bus stops are ever restored, many in Manhattan Beach would like to see service enhanced – something that could still happen.

“Operations Planning will be doing ride checks during this summer on both routes so that appropriate service levels can be verified,” Parker said.

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