Enhanced Commuter Bus Service to Include Four Routes Between Rockland & Westchester Counties - Will Reduce Travel Times and Improve Reliability
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that 31 state-of-the-art buses will be fully operational in time for the launch of Hudson Link, the enhanced bus service that will take commuters across the Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge and within the Interstate 287 corridor beginning Monday, October 29. The new transit service, first announced by Governor Cuomo in September, will be one of the most advanced in the nation, featuring new, world-class buses built in Plattsburgh, NY and intelligent transportation management technology with real-time traffic information for commuters. The system will help reduce travel times for bus riders, improve travel time reliability, enable the buses to operate at more consistent speeds and enhance safety. In addition, schedules for the new enhanced transit serviceare now available.
"The Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge embodies New York's unwavering commitment to building a 21stcentury infrastructure that will meet the needs of residents and visitors for decades to come," Governor Cuomo said. "The innovative Hudson Link bus service,with capabilities to analyze real-time traffic, will not only help to ease congestion and improve air quality, but ultimately provide New Yorkers with a safer, more convenient way to commute."
Hudson Link, run by Transdev, will provide more than 230 one-way rides per day between Rockland and Westchester counties with an estimated annual ridership of more than 400,000. The service will use state-of-the-art buses, manufactured by Prevost in Plattsburgh, Clinton County, to take commuters to Metro-North rail stations in Tarrytown or White Plains, both in Westchester County. It will replace the Tappan Zee Express.
The bus network will utilize Integrated Corridor Management, using technology and real-time traffic information to operate efficiently, helping to control traffic flow and manage congestion. Sensors collecting traffic and transit data will assist in routing and give the buses travel priority at some intersections that have traffic signals, making the new transit service one of most advanced in the nation. Cameras on the buses will assist with traffic monitoring along the I-287 corridor.
The 45-foot fully accessible buses will provide several passenger amenities on the buses, including free wireless network service, USB charging stations and bike racks on the front of the buses. The buses will be equipped with LED panels to provide passengers with real-time travel information and provide overhead storage and personal lighting for passengers.
Most bus shelters also will have free WiFi connectivity. Bike racks will be placed at or near bus stops, as space permits.
New York State Department of Transportation Acting Commissioner Paul A. Karas said, "Governor Cuomo led the way by making the new bridge a reality. This new bus service will provide a comfortable, convenient ride across the bridge for thousands of commuters each day, supporting jobs and economic growth in both the Hudson Valley where the service will run and in the North Country where the buses are being built."
Thruway Authority Acting Executive Director Matthew J. Driscoll said, "The new Hudson Link bus service will be a valuable and welcomed addition to the transportation landscape in the lower Hudson Valley. We look forward to Rockland and Westchester commuters having a seamless ride across the I-87/I-287 corridor and the Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge."
Congressman Eliot Engel said, "This new transit operation is a major win for Westchester and Rockland County residents. Not only does it replace an antiquated system, but it utilizes buses manufactured right here in New York State. I applaud Governor Cuomo for spearheading the enhancement of this bus service that will save commuters time and create a safer, more reliable fleet in the Hudson Valley."
Congresswoman Nita Lowey said, "The new Hudson Link transit system will bring much-needed improvements for hundreds of New Yorkers throughout the Hudson Valley. Not only is the new fleet comprised of state-of-the-art buses, but they are manufactured right here in New York, providing jobs and boosting local economies. I commend Governor Cuomo for his leadership on one of the most advanced transit service projects in the country today."
Senator Shelley Mayer said, "I am thrilled for public transit users in my district and Westchester County that the Hudson Link Service will launch this month and make travelers' commutes faster and more reliable. I helped lead the fight for increased capital funding for the Bee-Line Bus System in this year's budget. Thank you to Governor Andrew Cuomo for delivering on his promise to increase funding for public transportation in Westchester County with the launch of Hudson Link and 31 new state-of-the-art, built in New York State, buses. The Bee-Line Bus System serves thousands of people in my district, and I will continue to work with my colleagues in government to ensure proper resources are dedicated to public transit."
Assembly Member Ken Zebrowski said, "The opening of the new Hudson Link bus service is an exciting time for Rockland commuters. The new and improved buses, traffic enhancements and state of the art customer interfaces will provide riders with a more enjoyable and faster commuting option. I am pleased that the Hudson Link will provide an array of routes including the preservation of the express service from Lot J to Tarrytown; a popular route for Rockland commuters. This new service will hopefully improve existing riders' commutes and attract new riders to the system."
Assembly Member Amy Paulin said, "I am excited to see the new enhanced buses of the Hudson Link in operation, serving commuters from Rockland and Westchester Counties and beyond. We have much to learn from seeing the Integrated Corridor Management technology in action as it transports commuters to and from our Metro-North rail stations, and fully expect that this cutting-edge traffic management technology will make the ride smoother, more reliable, and safer."
Assembly Member Ellen Jaffee said, "Public transportation is the backbone of a successful thriving regional economy and The Hudson Link will provide timely, convenient transportation for thousands of commuters every day. I applaud Governor Cuomo for his steadfast commitment to upgrading New York's infrastructure and working to ensure that Rockland County commuters will have access to mass transportation that meets their unique needs and encourages ridership. I look forward to helping him build a word class transportation network fit for the 21st century."
Assembly Member Steve Otis said, "This is the first step towards improved mass transit service along the I-287 corridor that has been a priority for Westchester officials for many years. Congratulations and thanks to Governor Cuomo and State Transportation planners and agencies for working with our communities to bring more dynamic service options. Improved services will help commuters and all travelers."
Assembly Member David Buchwald said, "Westchester and Rockland residents and businesses will benefit from the new Hudson Link. Creating a modern, technologically advanced east-west mass transit route here in the lower Hudson Valley will help working men and women. Importantly, this service provides for the first time an express midway connection between Metro-North's Hudson and Harlem lines."
Assembly Member Thomas Abinanti said, "Technologically advanced mass transit is the future lifeblood of our communities. This is the first of many steps we need to link our communities together to make Westchester an even better place in which to live."
Assembly Member Karl Brabenec said, "More frequently, New Yorkers are seeking alternative forms of transportation - especially for their daily commute. With so many of my constituents traveling longer distances to get to work, and many traveling across the Hudson River daily, increased and improved bus options are a welcome addition for commuters in Orange and Rockland counties."
Rockland County Executive Ed Day said, "The launch of the new Hudson Link service will bring considerable relief to Rockland's underserved commuters. I thank Governor Cuomo for breaking through the bureaucracy to get the job done and replacing the Tappan Zee Bridge. I look forward to continuing to work together to improve mass transit and ensure we have the world class transportation system that our region deserves."
The State Department of Transportation has conducted extensive public outreach to inform travelers about the new service. In response to community interest, routing plans call for buses to maintain existing express service from Lot J at the Palisades Center in West Nyack, Rockland County to the Metro North stations in Tarrytown and White Plains.
The new transit service will feature four routes with new and upgraded bus stops, providing frequent, convenient connections between major employment, residential, medical, and entertainment centers via the following routes: 1) Suffern, Rockland County, to Palisades Center, Rockland County, 2) Monsey, Rockland County, to White Plains, Westchester County, 3) Palisades Center to White Plains, and 4) Palisades Center to Tarrytown, with both local and express service being maintained between Lot J at the Palisades Center and Tarrytown. The new service will offer multiple payment options, including cash, credit/debit, tickets, and a new mobile application.
The new service will enhance connectivity, making transfers to other local bus services as seamless as possible. Most bus stops will be located adjacent to, or within a block of, Bee-Line or Transportation of Rockland stops.
Transdev has New York offices on Long Island, where it provides transit service for the Nassau Inter-County Express in Nassau County, and has established a Hudson Valley office in Hillburn, Rockland County.
For more information on the service and to access the transit schedules, please visit www.ridehudsonlink.com.
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