MTA Commits to Studying West Shore Light Rail

The Staten Island Economic Development Corporation has spent more than a decade advocating for a light rail system that would run along the West Shore. 

 

The MTA has never signed on to the idea, but has now agreed to at least study the possibility.

 

"We are just delighted that the MTA is taking the opportunity to finally recognize that the West Shore of Staten Island deserves a study. Mass transit on the west shore corridor is vital to the future of this borough," said SIEDC's Steven Grillo.

 

The rail line would run from Richmond Valley to Elm Park.  It would also run over the Bayonne Bridge and connect to New Jersey Transit.

Senator Andrew Lanza and Assemblyman Michael Cusick are being credited with getting the study funded with Lanza threatening to hold the MTA Capital Budget if it wasn't included. Grillo says the feasibility study will likely consider several transportation options.

 

"It will dig into the much finer details of what type of transit. Heavy rail, light rail, bus rapid transit," said Grillo.

 

One of the proposed stops is at the West Shore Plaza shopping center on South Avenue. Many we spoke with there were happy to hear the news.

 

"We need transportation desperately here. Its terrible. We pay high taxes for nothing," said a resident.

 

"There is really not that much transportation on Staten Island other than the express buses and the regular buses," said another resident.

 

The MTA says it will complete the report no later than June of 2017. 

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