East Village residents are fighting the MTA's plan to introduce speedier crosstown bus service on 14th Street.
"It is very, very disturbing and concerning to hear that there might be elimination of our local stops," Councilwoman Carlina Rivera said.
The M14 runs east-west along 14th Street and north-south in the East Village along Avenue A and Avenue D.
The MTA wants to turn the route into faster Select Bus Service, which means installing kiosks so passengers can pay their fares before boarding at any one of three bus doors.
Residents are upset the MTA plans to reduce the number of stops in the East Village.
Older riders and people with disabilities say that would cause a hardship.
“Select Bus will take, let’s say, for example, seniors, people with disabilities parents, with strollers, too far off away from their stop and they would have to walk back and that can be quite an inconvenience," Daisy Paez, a Grand Street Guild resident, said.
“It’s a great idea to add the Select Bus Service, but we need our local stops," said Sandra Strother, president of the Grand Street Guild Residents Association. "It is what we know.”
The MTA says the Select Service will cut travel times, which they hope will reverse a one-third decline in ridership on the line since 2007.
The MTA is introducing the Select Bus Service as its cutting back evening and weekend service on the L subway line for tunnel repairs. The L runs beneath 14th Street in Manhattan.
Elected officials say they’ll attend an MTA community meeting next month on that tunnel work to press for changes to the Select Bus plan.
“What we’re looking for is consistency and reliability on the stops that exist, as well as express service," Rivera said.
Under the MTA's current plan, the new crosstown Select Bus service will hit the streets this June.