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Rep. Grimm Urges MTA to Extend S53 Bus Route to Brooklyn VA
STATEN ISLAND, NY – Today, Rep. Michael G. Grimm (R,C-S.I./Brooklyn) sent a letter to MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota requesting that the S53 bus route be extended to include a stop at the Brooklyn Veterans Administration Medical Center. The S53’s current route forces disabled and ill veterans to make a transfer to the B70 in order to go just an extra half mile to reach the Brooklyn VA.
“With the Manhattan VA closed due to damage from Superstorm Sandy, local veterans have no choice but to go to Brooklyn for their healthcare needs, and for some, the bus is the only option,” said Rep. Grimm. “Transferring buses just a half a mile from the hospital simply doesn’t make sense – especially for our elderly and disabled veterans who could greatly benefit from a more direct route that keeps them from waiting outside in the cold. As a Marine combat veteran, I always try to help those who have served our great nation, which is why, on behalf of our local veterans, I urge Chairman Lhota to extend the MTA’s S53 bus route to the Brooklyn VA.”
A copy of the letter sent to Chairman Lhota is attached and pasted below:
December 10, 2012
The Honorable Joseph J. Lhota
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Metropolitan Transportation Authority
347 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10017-3739
Dear Chairman Lhota:
I am writing to you to request an extension of the MTA’s S53 bus route to include a stop at the Brooklyn Veterans Administration Medical Center. The S53’s current route forces disabled and ill veterans to make a transfer to the B70 in order to get the essential medical treatment to which they are entitled. To add insult to injury, the transfer is only needed to make a half mile trip down the road.
This problem was made far worse when Superstorm Sandy caused extensive flood damage to the Manhattan VA, which in some cases is more accessible via mass transit. This hospital remains closed for outpatient services until March 2013 and indefinitely for inpatient services. Staten Island veterans now have no choice but to make the difficult journey to Brooklyn.
In government, we are often faced with complex problems that require creative answers. This is not the case with this issue. Extending the S53 bus route to the Brooklyn VA is common sense solution that will make healthcare far more accessible to our veterans. Many of them paid a hefty price to give us the freedom we currently enjoy, and this is an opportunity to give a little back in return. Thank you for your consideration of this matter, and I look forward to your prompt reply.
Michael G. Grimm
Member of Congress