By Juan Soto
The commute to work will never be the same for some southeast Queens riders.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority said that starting Aug. 31 a new, faster bus line will connect straphangers in Rosedale and Far Rockaway to subway stations in Jamaica.
The new Q114 will serve the same limited stops as the Q113 between Jamaica and Guy R. Brewer Boulevard and 147th Avenue, but will make only two limited stops on 147th Avenue, at Guy R. Brewer Boulevard and 222nd Street, adjacent to Springfield Lane.
It will also provide service to commuters at the current stops along Brookville Boulevard and Far Rockaway.
“Commuters residing in Rosedale and Far Rockaway face a commute along the Guy R. Brewer transportation corridor that can include up to 77 stops,” City Councilman Donovan Richards (D-Laurelton) said.
The Q111 and Q113 provide service on the Guy R. Brewer Boulevard corridor between Springfield Gardens and Jamaica, South Jamaica and Rochdale Village. At 147th Avenue, the Q111 heads to Rosedale and the Q113 to Far Rockaway.
An MTA spokeswoman said the Q114’s first run will be at 12:30 a.m. She added that overnight the bus runs local. The first rush hour service will leave Jamaica at 6:10 a.m. and 5:30 a.m. from Far Rockaway.
During the morning’s peak hours, every five minutes riders will see either a Q113 or Q114, and every seven to eight minutes during the evening’s rush hours.
The MTA estimates the Q111 and Q113 transports about 25,000 passengers on weekdays, 15,000 on Saturdays and 11,000 on Sundays.
For Richards, the Q114 “is an important component in increasing access to reliable public transportation options” for southeast Queens riders.
But he called on the MTA to keep improving service for Queens, the city’s borough with the longest commuter times.
“More needs to be done,” he said.
Future proposals regarding transportation from the MTA “must include serious consideration of rapid transit, Select Bus Service and increasing frequency service of the bus lines that service other outlying communities,” Richards said.
The restructuring of the Q113 local into the new Q114 will have no additional operating costs, the state agency pointed out. The MTA said the limited-stop service “should encourage additional ridership.”
Jackie Campbell, of the Rosedale Civic Association and a member of Community Board 13, fought for the new bus service. “The Q114 solves some of the problems, but not all,” she said.
Campbell, who testified at a Transit and Bus Committee meeting in early August, said she handed a list of proposals to the MTA “to improve service,” including one to have the new Q114 go farther into Francis Lewis Boulevard instead of turning on Brookville Boulevard toward Far Rockaway.
The same day the Q114 goes into service, the revised Q17 and Q27 in Flushing, in response to concerns raised by elected officials, Community Board 7 and St. George’s Church, will also begin operating.
The new layover for both lines to prevent congestion at a nearby church will be at 138th Street and 37th Avenue instead of the line dropping commuters off on 39th Avenue and laying over on 38th Avenue.
Reach reporter Juan Soto by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 718-260-4564.