NEW YORK—Greyhound is very close to obtaining approval to operate a new bus service to Philadelphia from Chinatown, according to news reports.
Officials—including state Sen. Daniel Squadron, Councilwoman Margaret Chin, and Assemblyman Sheldon Silver—stepped in to stop the new Greyhound service from beginning to operate out of a stop outside Seward Park Playground on Essex Street, after an outcry from Lower East Side residents. The Department of Transportation (DOT) had approved the stop, but mounting pressure from area residents ultimately won over.
Now Greyhound and its partner Peter Pan, which operate a budget brand under Yo!Bus, have chosen and won approval from Community Board 3’s (CB3) Transportation Committee for a new pickup location, a median near 2 Pike St., according to DNAinfo.
The full board of Community Board 3 still needs to approve the plan, which it is likely to do at its next meeting on Nov. 27, DNAinfo reported.
The transportation committee of CB3 voted 3–0 with one abstention, according to Bowery Boogie, a hyperlocal media. The approval is based on conditions including a requirement for onsite personnel to supervise loading and unloading. The surrounding area must also be kept clean, with trash bags to be taken away via the buses. Yo!Bus must also work with the Lower East Side Employment Network to hire locally.
The permit would be for a nine-month trial period. Yo!Bus would have to report back to the board after six months. The permit is not under a new inter-city bus system, since that system doesn’t start until next year, according to a spokeswoman with Senator Squadron’s office.
Christian DePalermo, representing the bus company, said a nearby ticket office at 98 East Broadway would also be a waiting area for passengers, but there would not be bathrooms at the office, according to DNAinfo. Under the conditions, only one bus at a time can stop at the median and 14 buses a day is the maximum. All fares are planned as $10 one way.
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