People might have to wait longer for some bus lines that serve the Upper West Side under an MTA proposal set to go into effect this September.

The M72, M66 and M10 are all in line for service cuts under an MTA plan designed to align bus frequency with ridership totals. The M79, which now has speedier “Select Bus Service”, would get more service during the morning peak, but less service at night and on Sundays.

The extent of the changes varies based on the time of day. The M72, for instance, would run every 10 minutes instead of every 9 during the morning rush hour, and would run every 20 minutes instead of every 15 at night.

The plan is outlined on page 141 of this MTA document, and we’ve excerpted one of the tables below (click to enlarge).

Top photo via wikimedia.

NEWS | 72 comments | permalink
    1. Ellen says:

      The M72 stinks now. Thanks for making it worse.

    2. David Collins says:

      Thank you DeBlasio.

      And thanks for raising my city income taxes and my real estate taxes.

      Oh, and thanks for raising tolls and subway/bus fairs.

      No wonder the streets are so clean, the subways run so smoothly and there is barely a homeless person around.

      • West Sider says:

        The state runs the MTA.

        • David Collins says:

          NYC owns the MTA – I pay NYC taxes. Stop with the spin. How about the noise, infrastructure crumbling, homeless getting no help, grime increasing, crime escalating (if you dont police crime then of course no crime to report!).

      • Mark says:

        Why is it people measure how functioning their society is based on how many homeless people they can sweep under the carpet. We can do better than this.

        • Cato says:

          People want the City to help those homeless people so they won’t be homeless anymore.

          I don’t recall seeing anyone advocate sweeping them under any rugs.

        • wr says:

          most of the homeless are 20 something former Occupy Wall Street lazy kids. They are smoking cigarettes and have expensive tattoos and are permitted to sit on the streets because of De Blasio.

        • Sarah says:


      • Pishi says:

        I second that- The state runs the MTA. De Blasio, the Mayor, (DeBlasio is a restaurant) Works for the city not state.

    3. Sammie@lynn says:

      I thought the M72 already had service cuts. It’s been arriving randomly early in the morning, sometimes every 20 minutes. Certainly not every 9 minutes.

    4. Jens says:

      The M10 doesn’t run frequently enough as it is. Subway service ia terrible and they are cutting bis service? Bad management. Furthermore this discriminates against older and handicapped riders who don’t feel safe on the subway. So old people are supposed to hike over to Amsterdam ir Columbus? Shameful.

    5. William says:

      I have waited forever for the M72!!! And now you now you are going to cut service. Unbelievable!!!

    6. CB says:

      I would use the M10, often, if it we’re ever on the horizon. Which happens maybe one time out of twenty.

      The MTA has reduced ridership on these lines by reducing frequency, which in turn …

    7. B.B. says:

      Well the M79 is “speedier” because drivers aren’t messing about.

      Board waving your Metro Card and ask why cannot pay using same; and driver will direct to kiosks outside. However you better be quick, hope there is a long line of passengers boarding and or a red light; because otherwise drivers simply shuts doors and bus pulls away.

      Have seen this happen time and time again; and is especially cruel late evening or night when buses run less frequently.

      • Cat says:

        Why would you try to board the bus with your Metro Card instead of a receipt from the kiosk? I’ve been using the SS buses on 2nd Ave and 86th Street for years, and now I can get to work even quicker by going to 79th Street. It’s a smooth system, especially in bad weather, and there will never be long lines at the kiosks like there are with a regular bus. Plus you won’t have people shoving you out of the way to get on because there are multiple entrances.

      • BMAC says:

        I fail to understand why this is a difficulty. There are usually at least 3 kiosks at each SBS stop, providing 3x the passenger throughput as one payment slot onboard the bus. Move passengers onto buses 3x faster, buses move more quickly, schedules are easier to keep. This is no different from just missing the bus as it closes the door and pulls away from the curb.

        You are of course perfectly free to take the risk of boarding the bus w/o a receipt from the SBS kiosks – just don’t complain if you get caught and ticketed in one of the occasional spot checks the MTA runs.

        • Michael G says:

          Nothing like a random “spot check” to make you feel like you’re living in a police state (or like you’re a sucker for paying the rest of the time).

          I agree with B.B. that the system just seems cruel — especially late night/early morning when ridership is low and the bus comes every 20-30 minutes. Metro cards shouldn’t be credit cards for buying more metro cards.

          • BMAC says:

            How is agreeing to abide by an honor system – and being caught shirking it – living in a police state?

      • Boopsie says:

        Before I knew better and learned the system I boarded the M79 with my card and saw the fare slot covered upon by cardboard. I shugged my shoulders (every so often over the years I have ridden a bus with one of those cardboard blocks) and rode the bus across the park only to be accosted after I stepped off by two cops who asked me why I didn’t have a paper slip. “I did not know.” I said, “But I’m happy to pay for the fare”. No dice. I got a $100 summons.

      • EricaC says:

        OK, but there are a lot of signs and now you know that this is the way it works, so hopefully you won’t run into this problem again?

      • Sarah says:

        I don’t get it. Do you not understand how Select Bus Service works? You don’t pay the driver. You pay outside. That’s an important way it speeds up trips.

      • ScooterStan says:

        Re: “Board waving your Metro Card and ask why cannot pay using same; and driver will direct to kiosks outside. ”

        REALLY?? By now everybody-and-their-uncle KNOWS that the M79 is an “SBS”, where one swipes his card at a kiosk in order to board both front AND rear doors.

        And you blame the driver (doing what he’s ordered to do) for YOUR lack of civic knowledge and/or sense of entitlement?

        • B.B. says:

          Hey, come down off your high horses!

          Only reported events as happened, and for the record one had already paid fare (via proper method).

      • Upper West Side Wally says:

        It’s called a learning curve. Miss that bus once, shame on the MTA, miss it twice, shame on you.

        • B.B. says:

          Suppose that could be true, but you are making the assumption everyone riding a NYC bus is from the city.

          Both the M79 and M72 have a sizable amount of tourist riders because of the museums/cultural attractions on UWS and UES.

          There is also the fact it seems the M79 is one of the few totally “Select Bus) routes. Other lines like Lexington, Madison, Third, and First (to name a few) have a mix of SB and regular service.

          Am not sure how it works legally, but *think* if you pay a SB fare the driver of a normal bus cannot accept that receipt as proof of payment.

          • BMAC says:

            Yes, but your MetroCard “remembers” that you have a transfer for 2 hours after swiping into the system. So you don’t need “proof of payment”, you’re already carrying it.

          • lynn says:

            Many times on 2nd Avenue when the SBS didn’t show up the drivers on the regular buses would accept the receipt as payment. I saw someone try it on another line though (3rd?) and the driver said absolutely not, so the passenger had to pay again.

      • Nj says:

        And the bus drivers that pull away from stop to only sit at a red light not letting people on because they say it’s unsafe. ugh!

    8. bill says:

      everyone(including mta) know these schedules are jokes…..when the bus shows up it shows up… “wheres my train” app on your phone, also has bus very well

    9. Ls says:

      Since about 2010, the MTA has made significant cuts to West Side bus service:
      Eliminated 42nd East/west route on 104.
      Rerouted 7 for pedestrian plazas in Times Square.
      Cut M10 into two sections 10 and 20 (resulting in longer trips as people need to switch).
      Just cut M5 (without any visible notice) into two sections 5 and 55.
      It also seems that frequency has been reduced on 104?

      But there do not seem to be cuts on the East Side….

      The more cuts, the more buses become unreliable – and people give up and don’t use. Reductions lead to less usage. Bus reductions will translate into more Uber and taxi use – and more traffic

      • ScooterStan says:

        Re:”Just cut M5 (without any visible notice) into two sections 5 and 55.”

        Here we go again! Before the change to the 5/55 routes the MTA published information AND asked the public for comments.

        And there were LARGE notices attached to walls of M5’s where they could be plainly seen by anybody who cared to look.

      • Via Ventana says:

        Does anyone remember when the posted bus schedules for the M104 had “frequent service” as the arrival times during the day-meaning between three and five minute apart? That certainly doesn’t exist any more. The 104 is much less frequent than it used to be.

    10. Springer's Springtime says:

      first the chopped the M10 from below 59th, now reduction in service.

      Why not just cancel that line and provide segways?

      #stupid #horrible #bad

    11. Chris says:

      M66 at York ave always has a line around the corner at peak times. I do not see how they can cut cross town service when there is no other way to get cross town in a timely manor. MTA management is so horrible.

    12. OriginalMark says:

      Cutting back on public transportation while more buildings are erected.
      So less service for more people.
      Makes perfect sense.

    13. msa says:

      The less the buses run, the less riders they’ll have. Elderly and disabled people depend on these buses. I notice they’re also cutting buses in Brooklyn that are even more needed than the ones here on the west side.

    14. EG says:

      The cuts make no sense. But at least upgrade the buses so we don’t add 20 minutes to the ride every time the handicap ramp is needed. I think the M57, M66, and M72 use the oldest buses in the system.

    15. mamaebbes says:

      Hahahaha like the M72 comes every nine minutes during the morning rush hour. Good one. Thanks for the laugh.

    16. OriginalMark says:

      The M57 is also on the list of cuts and serves UWSers.

    17. ron shapley says:

      “every 9 minutes”………that’s rich !!

    18. ron shapley says:

      Boycott buses…… It worked in Montgomery

      • Cat says:

        Yes, it worked in Montgomery, but didn’t those people then walk to their destinations every day?

    19. DB says:

      The plan already seems to be in place for the M10, less frequent service during rush hour. MTA, looking to crapify service in any way it can.

    20. Emily says:

      “Schedule”?? I didn’t realize the M57 actually ran on a schedule. I ride this bus daily and have waited 20+ minutes during morning peak. Another huge issue with this bus (and many of these listed) is bus bunching. Often heading west you see 3-4 buses following in a row! Very inefficient!

      • Ellen says:

        I agree with one of the readers. New construction is sprouting up everywhere on the UWS. It makes perfect sense to cut service for more people and more crowding. NOT. I also love when 3 buses come back to back and then if you miss it because you have to wait for the light, you wait 30 or more minutes. Also the other day, I was talking the 86 Street crosstown bus. There were lines at the kiosk and the driver drove away without waiting all for us. Nice guy.

    21. KD says:

      LOL who rides the f’ing bus.

      • lynn says:

        What a lovely contribution to the discussion.

      • I'm on da bus says:

        Re: “who who rides the —– bus?”

        Hmmm…just about EVERYONE, including the exceedingly attractive and probably well-off young couple who took the M66 from the UES to Central Park West the other night.

        The M66 is usually jam-packed with college students, hospital workers, and anyone needing access to the UWS or UES subway lines.

        And then there’s the disabled who CANNOT grab-a-cab/uber/via or hop-a-subway and must rely on the bus.

        Perhaps if you ever would take your eyes off your iPhone you might see other humans besides yourself and your cohort.

        • Cat says:

          I thought the initial poster was being facetious, which was followed by a sarcastic remark about it being a lovely comment. Now there’s a cohort? So funny how people process information here (then go off on a rant about various topics).

    22. B.B. says:

      While it does not work for everyone all the time, new Second Avenue Subway which stops at 57th and 7th can eliminate need for cross town bus.

      If am anywhere around Columbus Circle or even high 50’s and need to get to the East Side, just take the SAS and get off at closest stop, then walk or whatever from that point.

      • lynn says:

        Thank you for this info! I haven’t taken the SAS and had no idea it stopped near 7th Avenue. I’m definitely going to try this new cross-town method tomorrow.

        • B.B. says:


          After the new stops on UES, SAS runs along the “N” line from 57th and onto Brooklyn, but only makes several stops (57th, 42nd, 34th, Union Square, Canal Street).

          The 57th and 7th station is the same for “R”, “N” and “W” trains right at Carnegie Hall.

          You can get to say Bloomingdales far faster on the SAS from 57th and 7th than taking any crosstown bus.

    23. B.B. says:

      What kills me is you wait ten, fifteen, twenty or more minutes for a M72, M79, M86 going eastbound. Meanwhile like clockwork bus after bus going towards RSD (westbound)appears. What the heck are they all doing down there? Is there free cake and coffee or something?

      Meanwhile Bustimes or whatever app can say what it wants, nothing is coming.

      Finally when eastbound buses do arrive they are bunched two or more together.

    24. S. Stern says:

      The M10 service has already been cut down. Wait time is extremely long & it doesn’t go as far as it did. It’s a really necessary line for the many elderly & disabled people who use it and cannot use the subway.
      As for the M7 – it seems to have been cut already. I’ve frequently waited as long as 20 minutes for that bus at the 97th street stop.

    25. arlene says:

      and this is after the M66 was named the slowest and worst bus line in the city last year. What are they thinking. All these routes service an extremly conjested part of the city as well as Lincoln Center visitors.

      I think it;s time for therse agencies to start to think more carefully aboiut how they harm who they are supposed to be assisting.

    26. J N says:

      Service on the 10 bus has been so awful for the past year that people are getting fed up with waiting for the bus and end up having to hail a taxi. If that constitutes lower frequency of ridership then the MTA has got it all wrong. Bring back a vibrant and usable schedule and you’d have your fares back. Disgraceful. Public transport can no longer be relied upon for dependable service but only the very wealthy can afford to keep taking taxis.

    27. LEE APT says:



    28. Amelia says:

      We are a city that depends on public transportation. Why does it keep on getting worse instead of better and yet the fares continue to rise?? Nothing like standing in the blazing heat or freezing cold waiting for a bus that takes forever to come and is then overly crowded.

    29. Ls says:

      This seems to be consistent with the policy “focus” on bicycle expansion. Expand the cycling infrastructure which largely benefits younger and more affluent people (who live closer to work) – and cut bus transportation (more costly to operate) which is frequently used by lower income, elderly and disabled.

      Part of the Bloomberg Administration initiation of/focus on “demographic cleansing” of Manhattan.

    30. BillyNYC says:

      Another MTA failure and waste of money with the M79 with their new GPS technology on W. 81st St. Has failed !!! The GPS technology system has failed giving each bus the exact ETA at their new stops on West 81St.
      After all that construction and digging up for months the streets putting in new cables from Columbus Avenue and W. 81st St. to Central Park West and W. 81st St. is
      not working. Word has it the MTA is no longer pursuing this adventure. So what is with all this mess that’s going to be left on the sidewalks on W. 81st St. are they going to leave it or take it down ? What a waste !

      • BillyNYC says:

        To add on to what I’ve just mentioned about the M79 on West 81st Street the red bus lane is another piece of waist and the MTA should give back that parking which they took away from the residence and businesses on W. 81st St. South side of street.

        • B.B. says:


          Those dedicates SB lanes are part of what makes the service faster. Long as drivers are kept out of them, and or ticketed for parking/standing.

          One of the huge reasons service is so darned slow in Manhattan is that buses must compete in the same traffic as every other motor vehicle. It does not help that everyone and their mother sees fit to double park thus blocking a lane.

    31. Nicole says:

      It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. Service is so infrequent and unpredictable no one takes the M10 except people who can’t get down the subway steps so the MTA concludes there is no demand. The M72 and M66 are lousy, partly because of heavy traffic. It’s pathetic that it’s often faster to walk than take any of these buses.