“At the city line, where the street had two names” (I Have Often Walked by Ron Marzlock, April 19) reminded me of the recent demise of our old Q79 Little Neck Parkway bus. This coming June 25 will mark the second anniversary to the day when at 6:23 p.m., right on time, my wife and I boarded the last Q79 bus that departed Little Neck for its final destination on Jericho Turnpike in Floral Park.
Growing up in the neighborhood during the late 1960s and early 1970s, I recall it was known back then as the Q12A and was part of my life and that of many others.
When the MTA introduced MetroCards with free transfers between subway and bus, riding the Q79 became an even better bargain and become a more frequent part of my journey.
If service was suspended or seriously delayed on the Long Island Rail Road’s Port Washington Branch, the Q79 was my little secret lifeline. I would use the Hempstead Branch Floral Park Station. A quick three-block walk to Jericho Turnpike would reunite me with my good old friend the Q79.
It was always sad that residents of Floral Park practiced the NIMBY (not in my back yard) philosophy and refused to grant permission to extend the Q79 to the Floral Park LIRR Station.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority and its operating agency, New York City Transit, always seemed to have a policy of only running the same standard 40-foot local buses on all routes. Too bad that neither would budge.
Imagine if the MTA/NYCT, like other transit agencies, had purchased smaller 35-, 30- or 25-foot buses. Perhaps the Village of Floral Park would have agreed to accommodate those on its streets.
With a direct connection between both the Floral Park and Little Neck LIRR stations, there might have been a sufficient increase in ridership to justify keeping the Q79. Sadly, we will never know.
Let us toast the Q79 and memories of good times gone by.