Train traffic at sunrise at Stillwell Terminal, Coney Island. Photo: Marc A. Hermann / MTA
Drivers Across the Region Encouraged to Leave the Car at Home and Use Mass Transit
To showcase the community, financial, and environmental benefits of car-free travel, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is encouraging drivers to celebrate Car Free Day this Thursday by using greener methods of travel such as riding the bus, subway, or commuter railroad instead of driving alone by car.
Every year on Sept. 22, people worldwide are encouraged to get their vehicles off the roads to help benefit society by clearing traffic congestion, reducing energy use and cleaning the air by using mass transit. This year, Long Island and the Hudson Valley will once again celebrate Car Free Day.
“Using the Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad are the best way to get cars and trucks off the roads, providing a safe, comfortable ride for everyone in the region,” said Metro-North Railroad President and Long Island Rail Road interim President Catherine Rinaldi. “On Thursday, I hope that everyone on Long Island and in the Hudson Valley “takes the Pledge,” leaves their car at home and uses the LIRR and Metro-North to get to work, school, and their activities.”
“Mass transit is the heart of New York City, and the MTA has so many great options, there’s no excuse not to leave the car home,” said NYC Transit President Richard Davey. “We have already launched bus network redesigns in the Bronx and Staten Island, Queens is in progress, and Brooklyn will be next. Subway ridership is over 3.7 million, and trains are on time more often.”
On Thursday, LIRR Interim President Rinaldi will join Long Island officials to celebrate the tenth anniversary of Car Free Day in Farmingdale. The MTA partnered with Transit Solutions and 511NYRideshare, NICE Bus, Suffolk Transit and HART (Huntington Area Rapid Transit) in 2013 to get the word out about their mission to reduce traffic and improve air quality.
Hudson Valley residents will have the opportunity to learn more about car free options on Sept. 28, with an event focused on electric vehicles, similar to the MTA’s electric bus fleet, that will add 60 battery-electric buses in 2023 and 470 more in 2025-26, and the Clean Ride & Drive Expo at the Bedford Hills Train Station on Oct. 2.
About Car Free Day
In 2021, Car Free Day was commemorated in more than 3,100 cities in 50 countries around the world. It’s celebrated in different ways but with the common goal of reducing the number of vehicles on the road. People are encouraged to travel by train, bus, subway, bicycle, walking, or another alternative mode, to contribute to a greener environment.