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New Yorkers can walk about as fast as the city’s slowest bus, study finds

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NEW YORK — The slowest bus in the city would take more than four hours to drive from one tip of Manhattan to the other, according to a new study.

The M42 averages just 3.2 mph, analysis by the Straphangers Campaign and TransitCenter shows. It has the slowest speed out of more than 200 local bus routes reviewed in the study.

“Riding a bus can feel like being in a funeral procession, where you are awaiting a slow caravan of crowded, crawling and bunched buses,” Straphangers spokesman Gene Russianoff. “It’s maddening. Much more can be done to make them run faster.”

The organizations also found that the least reliable bus is the B12. One out of five buses on the line “bunched,” which means two or more buses arrived at a stop at the same time because they were not on schedule.

“Bus riders in NYC are used to the stressful and frustrating experience of waiting for a bus that doesn’t arrive when it’s supposed to, only to show up bunched with two or three other buses,” TransitCenter Deputy Executive Director Tabitha Decker said. “Bus lanes, priority at traffic signals and better dispatching are needed to take these buses from schleppie to peppy.”

The MTA is working on improving bus service, a spokesman said. It is a focus of New York City Transit President Andy Byford’s reform plan. It includes a new Staten Island Express Bus network, launching on Aug. 19, and better teamwork with the NYPD to improve enforcement.

“His comprehensive Bus Plan prioritizes completely redesigning the entire bus network in collaboration with NYCDOT and the NYPD, who are critical partners we need to unclog traffic and allow us to deliver the world-class service that New Yorkers deserve and that our fleet and personnel are capable of delivering,” the MTA spokesman said.

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