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Stop No. 7 work for Lunar New Year

TimesLedger Newspapers

An open letter to New York City Transit President Thomas Prendergast:

We would like to thank you for your Jan. 22 letter expressing the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s commitment not to disrupt No. 7 train service Feb. 8, 2014, the date of the 2014 Lunar New Year Parade.

While we do appreciate the MTA’s early commitment to not undertake work on the 7 line the day of the parade, after consultation with our business community and local leaders, it is clear that your offer falls short of the economic needs of our local small businesses and Flushing residents’ expectations for the 2014 Lunar New Year.

As you are aware, thousands of people travel to Flushing from other parts of the city year after year to join in the festivities celebrating the Lunar New Year, but just like Christmas celebrations are not confined to one day, nor are Lunar New Year celebrations. As families prepare to welcome the new year, they travel to Flushing to buy specialty items and delicacies. As the new year begins, families pack our local restaurants to eat and catch up with loved ones. This creates an economic boom for our local businesses spanning several weeks, which is hampered with disrupted train service.

Thus, in the interest of our constituents and local community, we must ask that in addition to Transit’s commitment not to disrupt 7 train service Feb. 8, 2014, the MTA also commits to providing normal, uninterrupted 7 train service during the weekend immediately prior to the Lunar New Year and the weekend immediately after. This would be the weekends of Jan. 24-25, 2014, and Feb. 1-2, 2014.

As we mentioned in our previous letter, the safety of MTA passengers must be the agency’s primary concern, and we would never ask you to put critical maintenance projects in jeopardy, but there is a palpable sense of frustration among our constituents who have to face this issue year after year.

Thank you again for working with us to come up with a reasonable resolution to our concerns about disruptions to the 7 line service during Flushing’s Lunar New Year celebration. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Grace Meng

U.S. Representative

(D-Flushing)

Toby Stavisky

State Senator

(D-Whitestone)

Ron Kim

State Assemblyman

(D-Flushing)

Peter Koo

City Councilman

(D-Flushing)

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