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Cloudy,79°
Monday, July 28, 2014
Officials host LIRR open forum
(Page 2 of 3)
Donovan Berthoud/Herald
State Assemblyman Brian Curran addressed local concerns about the Long Island Rail Road with MTA official Robert Brennan, left, during an open forum at the Rockville Centre Library on Jan. 30.
Larry Hoppenhauer, a Malverne resident who serves on a Town of Hempstead committee that focuses on mitigating airplane noise in the village, added that the West Hempstead branch’s fares, which are the same as other lines, are inequitable because of the much less frequent service, manifesting a “total lack of respect” to commuters who take the West Hempstead line.

Brennan said he did not know exactly when the LIRR would restore weekend service on the West Hempstead branch, but he said that officials are currently working to rectify the problem. “We’re hopeful that it will happen, but I would be remiss if I told you that it was going to happen in three months, maybe five months, maybe six months or a year,” he added.

Curran said he intends to urge LIRR officials to restore weekend service on the West Hempstead branch, first by convening a joint meeting with McDonald and State Sen. Dean Skelos to discuss a plan of action.

“The fact that ridership has increased on the West Hempstead line renders everything else irrelevant,” Curran said. “The fact of the matter is that in the last three years, we’ve seen an increase on the West Hempstead line that justifies the institution of the weekend service, period.”

Baldwin resident Florette Fraser also expressed concerns about commuters who take the Babylon train from either the Rockville Centre or Freeport stations but often park in the lots around the Baldwin station, leaving less space for residents who take the train from there.

“I don’t understand why I have to get out of my house 40 minutes early to get decent parking,” Fraser said. “The prime spots are left for people coming in from other towns, like Oceanside or maybe Freeport, and I’m talking about the spots between Grand Avenue and Milburn Avenue.”

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