By County Executive Ed Day
My administration recognizes the importance of improving our mass transit infrastructure. An area where unfortunately Rockland has been behind the eight ball for many years. However, we are making progress, in August 2017 the County’s Tappan Zee Express launched its first-ever Sunday service schedule. Along with a revised, expanded Saturday schedule.
The new service enjoyed immediate success with 235 riders on the inaugural first Sunday. We are pleased that our ongoing negotiations with MTA resulted in their agreement to fund the service expansion, which was a positive step in the right direction that continues bridging Rockland County’s multimillion dollar value gap.
Creating a 7-day schedule has also set the stage for the State’s Lower Hudson Transit Link service, which will replace the TZx service this Fall. I have heard concerns from many commuters that express service to Tarrytown has not been prioritized in the latest Lower Hudson Transit Link project plans. I share your worries and will fight to not only preserve direct express service to and from the Tarrytown Metro-North Station, but to see that service improved, as promised.
Forcing our commuters to have to spend more time to travel “local” on a more limited schedule to access the closest East of Hudson rail station is unreasonable. We’re not saying we don’t want a faster trip to White Plains. Of course, we do and we hope that happens. But not improving the existing, most popular express route to Tarrytown makes no sense at all.
I urge Rockland residents, especially our commuters, to participate in this discussion by contacting the Lower Hudson Transit Link project team and Metro-North to share your concerns, and by attending the next Lower Hudson Transit Link Open House meeting, which will take place on March 22nd from 6-8 PM in the Community Room at the Palisades Center Mall. We have seen large turnouts effectuate change and hope you can help me make that happen.
Rockland County, New York State and the MTA forged a path nearly 30 years ago to provide a fast, convenient connection to Metro-North’s Hudson line at Tarrytown. With our extremely limited, poor quality rail service West of Hudson, Metro-North must simply insist that express service to Tarrytown be improved with the Lower Hudson Transit Link, not sacrificed.
I have already met with the newly elected Westchester County Executive George Latimer about this issue. We have pledged to work together in a non-partisan manner on issues impacting both Counties.