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Riders Celebrate Return of B37 Bus

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Bus riders may notice some changes to service this week, as the Metropolitan Transportation Authority begins adjusting schedules and routes, and in Brooklyn, they're celebrating the return of a line that was axed several years ago. NY1's Jose Martinez filed the following report.

Here's something you haven't seen rolling along Third Avenue in a few years.

It's the B37, and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority says it's here to stay after falling victim in 2010 to massive budget cuts that eliminated or slashed service on dozens of bus routes.

"This bus has been running on this route for quite some time. For it to all of a sudden stop, put people in a bad position and I think they'll be very happy it's back," one rider said.

The MTA has poured more than $40 million dollars into restoring and boosting service since making nearly $100 million in so-called "doomsday" cuts four years ago.

And that's brought new life to the B37, which runs along Third Avenue from Fort Hamilton to the Atlantic Avenue/Barclays Center subway station, connecting riders to businesses and institutions along the way.

"When I had my parents in the hospital last year, it was a big deal to get to the hospital without the Third Avenue bus," another rider said.

The line's supporters had repeatedly rallied to have the B37 restored, and now they're celebrating its return.

"Who cannot say that we didn't fight? We fought—and it didn't just take one person; it took all of us," said Christopher Greif.

It's going to take a spike in ridership to make the investment in the restored line look like a wise one, though.

Before the MTA suspended service on the B37, the line carried an average of 3,200 riders each weekday. That's a far cry from more than 12,500 hundred riders using other local lines in the city on weekdays.B37 supporters say they think things will be different this time around, though.

"If you have more service, you get more ridership. The equation is that simple and the TA has to understand that. That if you give us more service, you'll get more ridership," said Councilman Vincent Gentile.

Buses currently run every 20 minutes.

"We're going to look to create an atmosphere below Third Avenue that puts a lot of people to work. So that's going to attract a tremendous number of people into that area, so they need the transportation to be able to get there. Third Avenue bus will be part of that transportation," said Senator Martin Golden.

It will be for the first time in a while.

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