Thursday, July 29, 2010

For over seven years I enjoyed the after-Broadway ride uptown from the theatre district to the upper west side almost as much as the evening itself.  

The M10 bus, which traveled north on 8th Avenue from Penn Station and then continued north on Central Park West to Harlem, provided the perfect post-theatre de-briefing. 

The bus was always crowded with theatre goers,  happily clutching their Playbills and discussing what they had just seen or what they should see next.   I would see a number of actors, sometimes a producer or two and other theatre professionals.  It was a community of post-theatre commuters swapping reviews and plans for what they would see next.  I loved the aspect of seeing the familiar faces and wondering what they might have seen and did they like it.  

Last month, the MTA cut the M10 line.   It now only runs from Columbus Circle up Central Park West to Harlem.  It's more or less pointless and takes twice as long to get home after seeing a Broadway show.   If one must still take the bus, you are forced to wait for a M20 that is traveling all the way up from Battery Park City.  The M20 does stop Columbus Circle before it turns off to go to Lincoln Center, so you could transfer to the M10.  Or, you could take the M104 to 57th Street, before it turns and travels north on Broadway, and walk almost three blocks to the first M10 stop.  

I could take the subway home, but at 11:00 pm or later chances are that I'll have to wait a 1/2 hour or more for a B or C train to take me up Central Park West.   The subway just doesn't feel safe during the late hours of the night, despite a presence by the NYPD.

There's always the choice of yellow cab, but really do I need to add another $12 to my already expensive evening plus throw in the mix of car sickness?   Another financial concern to consider is that the unlimited MetroCard which I currently purchase is $89.00 a month  and the MTA is considering raising the price to $100 and limiting the use of it.   

However, my main concern is that I miss the community of the post-theatre crowd.  I can hope that the MTA will reconsider it's cut to the M10, but in the meantime I'll either cut back on late nights in the Broadway theatre district or live unhapplily with the options.


jiva said...

What a disappointing turn of events for you. I know how much you must have loved riding with the after-theater crowd. I hope you get your bus ride back. I'll keep my fingers crossed!

jan@broadwayandme said...

Sarah, I am so with you on this one! It seems crazy that the MTA didn't think to let the route begin at 42nd Street since the No. 10 bus line served so many older theatergoers who simply can no longer pull the subway stairs. I'm surprised that the Broadway League let this one go by.