Update: NJ Transit spokesperson Nancy Snyder confirms that there is a possibility of limited service returning to the Montclair-Boonton line later this week, as previously mentioned by NJ Transit executive director James Weinstein.
“We appreciate our customers’ patience and ask that they continue to be patient. The destruction has been devastating and we are working nonstop to restore service. We know that it’s been a hardship for our customers,” says Snyder, who adds that the limited service would mean less than the usual number of trains normally offered.
“The capacity into New York Penn remains limited and there are special schedules on other lines because of the limited capability we have to get trains into New York Penn Station because of other areas of track that are affected.”
Snyder adds that she will contact Baristanet as soon as there is confirmation of any limited service being restored to Montclair-Boonton line. As soon as we hear, we will update readers here (and on Twitter and Facebook).
A reader also writes of parking problems:
At Grove Street Newark Light Rail station in Bloomfield, daily parking was filled by 8:25 am, dozens if not a hundred empty permitted and “visitor” parking spaces. Employee at the reception refused to allow parking in the Permit spaces; appeared surprised when I told him there was no service on Montclair Boonton line (“I don’t know anything about that”). Said to park on street, but all area street parking is 2 hr parking. NJT Customer service guy on phone seemed to think that it might be a good idea to allow parking in those empty spaces, and he would “pass it on to his supervisor.” This is so beyond incompetence.
One Montclair commuter, lawyer Daniel Clement, even considered chartering a bus. The idea was put on hold, but this was where his thinking was:
I am not a business, but like you, a commuter, frustrated by the hellish lines at the PA as a result of the loss of train service. I want to arrive at work at a reasonable time and not have to leave at 3:30 to beat the line.
I am looking for 50 people to commute with on a chartered bus every week until the trains resume service. Because I work too- I am not a bus company, I am not looking to for one day or morning only riders. I want to “sell” in only weekly blocks. You are free to sell or share your tickets.
By my estimate, the cost would be $75-100 per week. I would have the bus pick up at Walnut Street station- and drop out somewhere like 40th and 7th so that there is little travel in the city as possible. The bus will leave at the appointed times. 8:15 and 5:30.
Let me know if you are still interested.
Last night, the town of Montclair urged residents to help NJ Transit “assess commuter needs.” Meanwhile, Montclair-Boonton line commuters have been making their needs loud and clear on Twitter, especially after yesterday’s bus accidents at Lincoln Tunnel created a commuting nightmare.
Been on the bus since 7:45am. Stuck in Lincoln Tunnel since 8:45. Won’t be in office til 10. This. Commute. Suuuuuucks.
— Commute From Hell (@fromheretoNJ) November 12, 2012
— Elisabeth Egan (@LizEgan) November 13, 2012
— eric osterberg (@ericosterberg) November 13, 2012
— David Polinchock (@polinchock) November 13, 2012
After saying they were exploring additional options for Montclair Boonton line customers, NJ Transit began offering free shuttle bus service between Bay Street, Glen Ridge and Bloomfield Avenue stations and Weehawken Ferry Terminal on Friday, November 9.
This line has experienced significant damage to overhead wires, especially on the Montclair Branch. In addition, flooding in Kearny has caused rail washouts making rail traffic impassable. Service remains suspended until further notice.
Why can’t NJT buses take us to the newly-running Morris & Essex stations near GR and Bay street? It might save, oh, 2-3 hours each way commuting for most of us. In what universe is the current NJT plan practical for any of us? None!