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Intercity Bus Update: CB3 Plans Town Hall, Video Shows Pike Street Chaos

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A Yep bus operating illegally on Pike Street, July 2015.
A Yep bus operating illegally on Pike Street, July 2015.

It’s been awhile since we’ve checked in on the Lower East Side/Chinatown intercity bus wars. As we’ve reported on numerous occasions, local residents are beyond frustrated with the onslaught of both legal and illegal bus companies using the neighborhood’s sidewalks as a makeshift bus depot. Here are a few updates.

On Tuesday, November 10, a company going by the name GD Tour Inc. will go before Community Board 3’s transportation Committee with a request for a permit at 125 East Broadway (between Rutgers Street and Allen Street). This is one of the most congested stretches on the Lower East Side for intercity buses.

Meanwhile, CB3 is planning an Intercity Bus Town Hall Meeting on December 1 “to identify problems and potential solutions resulting from non-compliant interstate bus companies.” A state law setting up a permit system for the buses was implemented in 2013. While local police precincts have written tickets in an attempt to deter the violators, many local activists believe the problem is worse than ever. The meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. at P.S. 124, 40 Division St.

The local SPaCE Block Association continues to document the violations. The organization’s president, Emma Culbert, recently sent along this video from Pike Street, near East Broadway. It was shot at 9:30 p.m. on October 18. Culbert reported that there were three buses on one block, two loading/unloading passengers and one parked in a space reserved for another bus company. Yep does not have a permit for this or any other location in the neighborhood.

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  1. Oh please – CB3 hosting a ‘town hall’ on intercity buses?? How laughable!

    This is just a way to pretend that CB3 is doing something on the LES bus crisis. Instead, CB3 under the helm of Susan Stetzer continues to be in support of bus proliferation on the LES in order to please Margaret Chin and the Chinatown members of CB3.

  2. What chaos is demonstrated by this video? I see no chaos. Also, the drugs and guns used to move on Greyhound before chinatown buses. They now use chinatown buses for the same reason those people on the sidewalk are- it’s cheaper. And Greyhound and Megabus have both killed many “a dude”. Google that.

  3. You clearly have no knowledge of the problem, or are a supporter of Chinatown buses. Tell me, would you like to have this mess of people crowding, pushing, and yelling right outside your residence or business? I don’t think so…

    Now i understand your point of view, I just now read one of your earlier comments where you discussed the difficulties of your running your charter bus operation to Atlantic City!! You are a Chinatown bus operator!

  4. “Dude”, you obviously don’t live in the area. Imagine this mess outside your home in Queens. If you don’t think the area around Allen/Pike and East Broadway is a mess, then you really have no pulse for the community. Come to the Town Hall meeting and hear the frustrations of the people who live here. I can’t even catch a local MTA bus, which actually serves the local community, because of this constant blockade. These buses, both illegal and legal, are a problem. Especially the casino buses which suck the life out of poor communities. Try Googling that.

  5. My comments were in response to the video, I should have been more specific. If the video (or more specifically the voice in the video) had been about blocking the bus stop then I’d have had no comments. I’d agree with your point about blocking the stop, or the sidewalk, or the exhaust affecting the tenants above. None of that has to do with drug or gun runners mentioned in the video.
    Also, I manage a bus company in NJ. I don’t do lines and I don’t run in or out of chinatown. But, up until 4 years ago, I was a driver for Blue Sky and before that Apex on 13 Allen st that was later shut down. So I do understand how they feel.
    The federal law says they can pickup curbside, so a new market is born, everybody starts making money, I quit driving trucks and now (2007) I can go home every night to my kids, owners are making investments, bus dealers are making money, but then too much competition, more buses, gets too crowded, the city doesn’t have a proper response, and the community is rightly frustrated. But let me ask you this – if the city can’t figure out what to do, which company should close their doors and have their drivers looking for work, have their house foreclosed on, file bankruptcy etc to make sure the sidewalk is clear? There are 2 sides, and the city needs to work it out. But my point previously is none of this has to do with guns or drugs. Those guys ride whoever is the cheapest.

  6. Why is there no bus depot planned for SPURA???? That’s what we really need in this area, and that’s where the most space is available for it. Not sure why elected leaders don’t see this problem as real and are not looking for real solutions in the area. The Essex Crossing Bus Terminal is the best way to get these problematic people in/out of this City.

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