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Bensonhurster starts Ridge-to-Manhattan bus service

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Bang, zoom — straight to Manhattan!

A Bensonhurst bus driver is launching an express service for Bay Ridgites who are fed up with the R train and sick of forking over a small fortune each week to ride Metropolitan Transportation Authority express buses into Manhattan. The service, Four Hearts Transportation, will put rubber to road in March and is geared toward riders who are looking for more of an experience than a mere morning commute, according to the modern-day Ralph Kramden behind the wheel.

“I want to be part of the people’s routine. When they come on the bus they’ll see a friendly face everyday,” said James King, who drives school buses by day and also drives visitors to the Upstate Correctional Facility in Malone, NY, for conjugal visits. “If you give people a good ride, make them feel comfortable. They’ll come back.”

A one-way ride on King’s line will cost $5 — compared to $6.50 for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s express bus — and a weekday commuter book that will run Ridgites $40 with the fifth day of rides free. 

King expects to lure customers with the prospect of a cheaper ride, he said.

“It’s all about giving people an affordable, reliable alternative,” he said. “The people out here just want something to can call their own.”

Bay Ridge has two Manhattan-bound express buses run by the transit authority — the X27 to downtown Manhattan and the X37 to midtown. 

King’s route — inspired by the now-defunct Metro Apple Express — will start at 97th and Third Avenue, wind through Brooklyn (making stops along the way), speed into the financial district, and wrap up in midtown. King will pick up straphangers along the route starting at 7:50 am and return the way he came starting at 5:20 pm, he said.

His flagship engine is a 1985 General Motors bus with fire-engine red pleather upholstery and a sleek, silver paint job. The bus is registered with the city and undergoes safety inspections every six months — the most recent inspection was Feb. 7. King bought the set of wheels up in Massachusetts, where it ran as a campus shuttle for the University of Massachusetts, and restored the dilapidated bus to its former glory. 

“She needed some love, so I fixed her up,” said King. “She has that old-school vibe. It makes people stop and take a peak. The looks on their faces are just unbelievab­le.” 

But the service isn’t just an excuse to get Ridgites cruising in ’80s style. King’s father was a Metropolitan Transportation Authority bus driver for a handful of decades, and running a bus service is one way to preserve his memory, said King. 

“This is how I keep my dad’s spirit alive,” he said. “I’m a sentimental knucklehead when I want to be.”

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at cspivack@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.

 

 
Posted 12:00 am, February 10, 2017

 

©2017 COMMUNITY NEWS GROUP

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I thought I had heard that some van service had replaced the Metro Apple lines, but then there was nothing there. I had thought the displaced New York Bus Service (which operated those mobile classroom buses for I believe Jewish schools in Brooklyn) would have been good to pick up the routes. Then, I thought I heard (MTA) was considering bringing them back, when they created MTA Bus.

So now, someone else wants to do it instead.

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$5.00 for that?? lol... I considered living on Shore Road when I was going to move back to Brooklyn, and I wouldn't consider this service. I don't see how he could compete with the X27/X37 set up.

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Did he get the permit from NYCDOT to access bus stops?

Good question. I could also see the (MTA) making a stink about this and going after him unless the.route he is taking isn't in direct competition with the X27/X37.

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Good question. I could also see the (MTA) making a stink about this and going after him unless the.route he is taking isn't in direct competition with the X27/X37.

It isn't:

 

 

Bay Ridge has two Manhattan-bound express buses run by the transit authority — the X27 to downtown Manhattan and the X37 to midtown. 

King’s route — inspired by the now-defunct Metro Apple Express — will start at 97th and Third Avenue, wind through Brooklyn (making stops along the way), speed into the financial district, and wrap up in midtown. King will pick up straphangers along the route starting at 7:50 am and return the way he came starting at 5:20 pm, he said.

 

This is essentially a revival of an old service that was discontinued primarily because the company fell apart.

I wanna know when this service is suppose to begin. The concept is interesting, but with one trip in each direction (which is what it sounds like), I don't know how many people will be regular customers.

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It isn't:

 

 

This is essentially a revival of an old service that was discontinued primarily because the company fell apart.I wanna know when this service is suppose to begin. The concept is interesting, but with one trip in each direction (which is what it sounds like), I don't know how many people will be regular customers.

lol... That was my other question... How many trips are planned? You know I must say, some people don't think when they start up a business. So this guy bought a beater and thinks he is going to turn a profit? That bus WILL need maintenance, and not just on weekends given its age. How is he going to market this service? Then there's the question of how fast is this bus versus the X27/X37? $5.00 but no transfers... Makes you wonder why he even bothered. I predict he'll go under before the end of the year.

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Like the guy's spirit; doesn't seem like a shyster like Azumah....

 

Hate to break it to the guy though, you're not going to lure much of that potential clientele into taking an RTS into Manhattan....

-------------------------

 

side note: Reading the thread title, I said to myself, who the f*** is demanding service from the middle of nothing in Suffolk county, to Manhattan.... Now granted, they axed the 5a, but still :lol:

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King’s route — inspired by the now-defunct Metro Apple Express — will start at 97th and Third Avenue, wind through Brooklyn (making stops along the way), speed into the financial district, and wrap up in midtown. King will pick up straphangers along the route starting at 7:50 am and return the way he came starting at 5:20 pm, he said.

 

 

He doesn't seem to have a web site. How is anybody supposed to find out where the stops are?

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The “winding” through Brooklyn sounds awfully slow. I would take my chances with the (R).

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X27/X37 already provides from Bay Ridge to Manhattan then Via Gowanus Expwy and Tunnel.

 

If you read the article you would see that his routing in Bay Ridge would be different from the X27/37

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If you read the article you would see that his routing in Bay Ridge would be different from the X27/37

 

The article says only that the bus "will start at 97th and Third Avenue, wind through Brooklyn (making stops along the way), speed into the financial district, and wrap up in midtown." There is no mention of where those "stops along the way" are or what path the bus will follow.

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If it starts in March, I would give it a little while before he actually sets up the website listing all the stops and everything. Still. one trip each way....and an RTS bus (even if it has the cushioned seats)....don't see it competing with the X27/37 or (R) train.

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Seems like a bus fan special...only people like us would be into a 1985 6v92 running down into Brooklyn, but man, many of us sure would be into it!

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This is the link to the USDOT filing for the company, Four Hearts Transportation

 

http://www.quicktransportsolutions.com/truckingcompany/newyork/four-hearts-transportation-usdot-1385645.php

 

It says its based out of 1652 Pacific St, a co-op, so it doesnt even look like he has a dedicated shop. This really is a one-man show.

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lol... That was my other question... How many trips are planned? You know I must say, some people don't think when they start up a business. So this guy bought a beater and thinks he is going to turn a profit? That bus WILL need maintenance, and not just on weekends given its age. How is he going to market this service? Then there's the question of how fast is this bus versus the X27/X37? $5.00 but no transfers... Makes you wonder why he even bothered. I predict he'll go under before the end of the year.

Look who's talking: Stay in the BxM2 where you belong. This guy is $1.50 (make that $2.50 after March 1st) cheaper than MTA, who is cash strapped for more fares according to TWU-X. What do you really want in life? Something cheap and better service or something expensive & less service and the headaches. You tell me.

 

His dad used to work for the TA, and that isn't your average man. If you read carefully, he is going to pass. He is also got the city's permit

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using NYC Transit Forums mobile app

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Look who's talking: Stay in the BxM2 where you belong. This guy is $1.50 (make that $2.50 after March 1st) cheaper than MTA, who is cash strapped for more fares according to TWU-X. What do you really want in life? Something cheap and better service or something expensive & less service and the headaches. You tell me.

 

His dad used to work for the TA, and that isn't your average man. If you read carefully, he is going to pass. He is also got the city's permit

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using NYC Transit Forums mobile app

What do you mean? Express bus fares are not going up.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using NYC Transit Forums mobile app

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Look who's talking: Stay in the BxM2 where you belong. This guy is $1.50 (make that $2.50 after March 1st) cheaper than MTA, who is cash strapped for more fares according to TWU-X. What do you really want in life? Something cheap and better service or something expensive & less service and the headaches. You tell me.

His dad used to work for the TA, and that isn't your average man. If you read carefully, he is going to pass. He is also got the city's permit

Sent from my iPhone using NYC Transit Forums mobile app

lol... Well now somebody has an agenda...

What do you mean? Express bus fares are not going up.

Sent from my iPhone using NYC Transit Forums mobile app

Ne clearly doesn't know what he means.

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lol... Well now somebody has an agenda...

Ne clearly doesn't know what he means.

What's even wierder to me is that if fares were to go up for a single ride, it would've made it only $2 more for a ride.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using NYC Transit Forums mobile app

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He should have gone with a 1985 MCI Classic, or perhaps an early '80s GM/Flxible New Look.  An RTS.. pretty meh.
 

He doesn't seem to have a web site. How is anybody supposed to find out where the stops are?


By reading a printed map- it's worked fine for millennia...

As to whether or not he even has a map of his route, well that's another story...

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He should have gone with a 1985 MCI Classic, or perhaps an early '80s GM/Flxible New Look.  An RTS.. pretty meh.

 

By reading a printed map- it's worked fine for millennia...

As to whether or not he even has a map of his route, well that's another story...

We'll in this day and age if you don't market anything you'll definitely struggle. He needs to be visible, or may struggle attracting ridership. The best way to get seen IMO is trying to put himself on the transit app.

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