The big picture

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In some ways, it was refreshing reading about the problems caused by the Hampton Jitney using a local bank parking lot [“No room at the bank leads to one less stop,” The Press of Manorville and The Moriches December 5; “Jitney adjusts Manorville stop,” 27east.com). Rather than another story about congested roadways, an automobile accident on County Road 111, or whether a cloverleaf or stoplight is a better traffic flow measure, it was nice to see the terms “bus” and “carpooling.”

Our obsession with and dependency on automobiles, particularly on Long Island, is a large part of why eastern Suffolk is no longer rural. But while bus service into Manhattan helps take cars off the road, there’s an even more efficient way to transport people: commuter rail service. It would take just about the same two hours for commuters to travel by train from Manorville to Penn Station as it does to ride the bus. But the Long Island Rail Road had the unfortunate foresight to close many stations in eastern Suffolk between 1960 and 1990.

Given that roads will continue to be over-burdened and petroleum prices eventually will rise, re-establishing passenger train service at many of these closed stations is good public policy and makes long-term sense.

HERB STROBELCenter Moriches

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