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The Q65 bus route constitutes a public transit line in Queens, New York City, United States. The south-to-north route runs primarily on 164th Street, operating between two major bus-subway hubs: Sutphin Boulevard – Archer Avenue/Jamaica and Flushing–Main Street. It then extends north along College Point Boulevard to College Point at the north end of the borough. The route is city-operated under the MTA Bus Company brand of MTA Regional Bus Operations.

Flushing–Jamaica Line
College Point Line
A bus in Q65 service in Queens
SystemMTA Regional Bus Operations
OperatorMTA Bus Company
GarageCollege Point Depot
VehicleNew Flyer C40LF CNG
Began serviceApril 7, 1891 (College Point Trolley)[1]
December 2, 1899 (Flushing–Jamaica trolley)[1]
August 10, 1937 (bus service)[1]
StartCollege Point – 110th Street
ViaCollege Point Boulevard, 164th Street
EndJamaica – Sutphin Boulevard / LIRR station
Length5 miles (8.0 km) (Flushing–Jamaica trolley)[1][2]
9.1 miles (14.6 km) (Q65)[3]
Operates24 hours[4]
Annual patronage6,150,259 (2017)[5]
← Q64  {{{system_nav}}}  Q66 →

The bulk of the bus route between Jamaica and Flushing follows a former streetcar line known as the Flushing–Jamaica Line,[1] Jamaica–Flushing Line,[1][6] or 164th Street Line,[7] operated by the New York and Queens County Railway from 1899 to 1937. The northern portion of the route follows a second line operated by the company called the College Point Line or Flushing–College Point Line,[8] which began operation in 1891. Both lines, combined known as the Jamaica–College Point Line[1] or Jamaica−Flushing−College Point Line,[9] were replaced by bus service in 1937, operated by successor companies Queens-Nassau Transit Lines, Queens Transit Corporation, and finally Queens Surface Corporation until the route was taken over by the city in 2005.

Route descriptionEdit

Some Q65 buses, like the one pictured, short-turn at Goethals Avenue near Union Turnpike

Streetcar routeEdit

Flushing–Jamaica LineEdit

The original Flushing–Jamaica Line, nicknamed the "Toonerville Express",[10] began at the intersection of Broadway and Lawrence Street (now Northern Boulevard and College Point Boulevard respectively) at the northern edge of Downtown Flushing near Flushing Creek. It ran east to Main Street, then south along Main Street and Jamaica Avenue (now Kissena Boulevard) to Sanford Avenue. It then ran short distances east along Sanford, south along Bowne Avenue (now Bowne Street), east on Forest/Franconia Avenue (45th Avenue), and south on 162nd Street to Pigeon Meadow Road at the west edge of the Flushing Cemetery. The line proceeded south for five miles along an undeveloped right-of-way owned by the railroad, which would later become 164th Street, to what is now Normal Road, a few blocks north of Hillside Avenue. The line ran short distances west to a point between Parsons Boulevard and 153rd Street, south to 90th Avenue, and west to Washington Street (later 160th Street) ending at Jamaica Avenue in Downtown Jamaica.[1][6][11][12][13] The line shared a terminal at 160th Street and Jamaica Avenue with the trolley lines of the Long Island Electric Railway, which operated streetcar lines to Far Rockaway, Brooklyn, and Belmont Park.[2][6][14] On Sundays, a shuttle service ran to take passengers from Downtown Flushing to Flushing Cemetery.

College Point LineEdit

The College Point line, consisting of two tracks, began in Flushing at a T-junction on Broadway and Lawrence Street with the Flushing–Jamaica Line and the Corona Line traveling west along Broadway (Northern Boulevard). It ran north along Lawrence Street, the College Point Causeway, and 122nd Street (all part of the modern College Point Boulevard) to 14th Road (northbound) or 15th Avenue (southbound). It then ran west to 110th Street and 14th Avenue at the edge of the East River.[6] The line served the College Point Ferry or 99th Street Ferry, which ran to East 99th Street in the Upper East Side of Manhattan.[1][15]

Current bus serviceEdit

The current Q65 service begins at the College Point Line's terminal at 110th Street and 14th Avenue, and follows the former trolley route to Northern Boulevard. After running on Main Street and Kissena Boulevard, interchanging with the IRT Flushing Line subway, Long Island Rail Road Port Washington Branch, and several other bus routes, it proceeds east along the former trolley route, and south along 164th Street to Hillside Avenue. It turns west on Hillside Avenue, then south on Parsons Boulevard, merging with the parallel Q25 and Q34 routes (also former Queens Surface routes). The routes proceed south to Jamaica Avenue, then west to Sutphin Boulevard, terminating at Sutphin Boulevard and 94th Avenue underneath the Jamaica terminal for the LIRR and AirTrain JFK.[4][16][17]

During weekday rush-hours, the Q65 employs limited-stop service in both directions. Limited-stop buses make all stops north of 25th Road and College Point Boulevard.[4]


A 1909 map of Jamaica showing the route of the Flushing–Jamaica streetcar route (orange) and the current Q65 bus route (light blue).

Streetcar operationsEdit

On July 26, 1886, the Flushing and College Point Street Railway was incorporated, with the intent of building what became the College Point Line. The then-villages of Flushing and College Point granted franchises to the company in summer 1887, with the provision of only employing overhead trolley wire for five years before switching to battery power.[1] The line began operation on April 7, 1891, running on batteries instead of overhead wire.[1][18] Because of the expenses of battery power, the railroad went bankrupt and was sold at auction on April 4, 1892.[1] The line was later equipped with overhead wire, improving profits and patronage.[1] On December 31, 1896, the line became part of the New York and Queens County Railway system.[1]

The New York & North Shore Railway Company was organized on March 13, 1897, as a subsidiary to the New York and Queens County Railway. At the end of the month, it proposed several new routes including the Flushing–Jamaica Line.[1] The franchise for the line was awarded on December 31, 1897.[10] Construction began in 1898 and continued through 1899.[1][11] Service on the line began on December 2, 1899.[1][2] Earlier that year on October 13, the Long Island Electric Railway (LIER), operators of the Jamaica−Far Rockaway Line, was purchased by the company.[1][19] Track connections at 160th Street had been built during the construction of the Flushing–Jamaica Line in order to facilitate service between the two lines.[1][11] On March 12, 1900, through service on the combined routes began between Flushing and Far Rockaway.[2] This service ended on August 1, 1901 after the LIER was bought out by the Hogan Brothers, a group of trolley line surveyors who worked on both the Flushing and Far Rockaway lines.[2] During the month of May in 1902, the Flushing–Jamaica Line was bought out by the parent New York and Queens company, through several complex proceedings and reorganizations.[1] In 1906, it became part of the Interborough Rapid Transit Company (IRT).[7]

The 99th Street Ferry in College Point ceased service in 1913.[8]

In 1923, the line went into bankruptcy and the IRT relinquished ownership.[7] By the mid-1920s, the Flushing–Jamaica Line was double tracked.[1][7] On October 2, 1928, several months after the opening of the Flushing–Main Street subway station, Flushing–Jamaica through service was extended to College Point.[1]

Decline and conversion to bus serviceEdit

Around this time, many streetcar lines in Queens and the rest of the city began to be replaced by buses, particularly after the unification of city's three primary transit companies in June 1940.[2][20] Many local civic organizations had been campaigning for a bus route along the Flushing–Jamaica Line, and the removal of the trolley route that ran in close proximity to private houses. The administration of Mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia, and New York City Parks Commissioner Robert Moses, also desired to use the right-of-way to build the planned Grand Central Parkway (this highway would instead be built along the western end of Flushing Meadows–Corona Park).[1] The College Point trolley, meanwhile, was cited for noise disturbances.[2]

On December 18, 1936, the New York City Board of Estimate voted to motorize the trolley franchises of the New York and Queens County Railway.[21] Bus service between Flushing − Main Street and 160th Street in Jamaica began on July 1, 1937[22] under the designation "Q-65".[23][24] On July 2, the railroad turned over the right-of-way of the Flushing–Jamaica Line between Flushing Cemetery and Jamaica to the city in order to create a proper 164th Street.[25] Buses fully replaced trolley service on the Flushing–Jamaica Line on August 10, 1937.[1][10][18][26] Initially, the route ran along Kissena Boulevard and Bowne Street between Horace Harding Boulevard and 46th Avenue, with 164th Street impassible by vehicles through Kissena Park.[1][10] Service on the College Point trolley was abandoned on August 23 of that year, replaced by buses between 110th Street and Flushing.[1][8][18] The Flushing-Jamaica buses were rerouted onto 164th Street after the road was paved and opened on August 10, 1938.[1][9][27] The company's stock and property were transferred to its subsidiary Queens-Nassau Transit Lines company, which operated the buses.[1][21] By 1940, the Q65 route ran between College Point and Jamaica. That year, the company applied for an extension of the route north along 122nd Street (College Point Boulevard), which was never implemented.[23][28][29] Queens-Nassau would become the Queens Transit Corporation in 1957.[30]

In addition to the Q65, there was a short run service labeled Q68 between Flushing and the Flushing Cemetery along the route, successor to a Sunday service during trolley operations. Upon the transition to bus service, it became a rush hour weekday service to supplement the Q65, as a shuttle to the Main Street subway station. This route was later merged with the Q66 route along Northern Boulevard, most likely because the company's Woodside bus depot (now closed) was located at the end of the Q66 line. Even after Queens Transit moved their depot to College Point in 1957, the company continued to operate the Northern Boulevard-Cemetery service, using the Q66/Q68 designation. In 1965, the service was relabeled Q66/Q65, and three years later, it was discontinued.

The bus company would become Queens-Steinway Transit Corporation in 1986, and Queens Surface Corporation in 1988.[30] In 2004, the southern termini of the Q65, Q25, and Q34 were moved west one block along Jamaica Avenue, from 160th Street to Parsons Boulevard.[31]

MTA takeoverEdit

A former Queens Surface Orion V CNG bus on the Q65 in Downtown Flushing

On February 27, 2005, the MTA Bus Company took over the operations of the Queens Surface routes, part of the city's takeover of all the remaining privately operated bus routes.[32][33] Under the MTA, the Q25, Q34, and Q65 were extended from Jamaica Avenue to the Jamaica LIRR station on Sutphin Boulevard in 2007.[34] Also in 2007, bidirectional limited-stop service was introduced on the Q65 during rush hours between Jamaica and Flushing–Main Street.[35]

On April 15, 2013, Q65 Limited service began skipping two stops along College Point Boulevard, at 26th Avenue and the Whitestone Expressway.[36] In 2014, the 164th Street corridor along with the Parsons/Kissena corridor and Main Street corridor were evaluated for a potential Select Bus Service (SBS) route between Flushing and Jamaica.[37][38] The Q65 Limited was not selected for conversion; the Q44 Limited became the Q44 SBS on November 29, 2015,[39] and the Q25 Limited was studied for future conversion.[40] In September 2015, as part of the Northeast Queens Bus Study, it was suggested to modify a small portion of the Q65 route near Flushing Cemetery, taking it off Bowne Street and moving it onto the wider Parsons Boulevard.[40]

In September 2016, because Q65 buses frequently detoured to avoid traffic on the narrow 14th Road, the Q65 was rerouted to run via 14th Avenue in College Point. Six bus stops on 14th Road were discontinued and replaced by three stops on 14th Avenue.[41]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab Seyfried, Vincent F. (1950). Full text of "New York and Queens County Railway and the Steinway Lines, 1867-1939.". Vincent F. Seyfried. Retrieved December 20, 2015 – via
  2. ^ a b c d e f g Seyfried, Vincent F. (1961). Full text of "Story of the Long Island Electric Railway and the Jamaica Central Railways, 1894-1933 /". F. E. Reifschneider. Retrieved December 20, 2015 – via
  3. ^ "Transit & Bus Committee Meeting September 2013" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. September 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 25, 2013. Retrieved March 9, 2016.
  4. ^ a b c MTA Regional Bus Operations. "Q65 bus schedule" (PDF).
  5. ^ "Facts and Figures". August 28, 2011. Retrieved January 19, 2016.
  6. ^ a b c d Stephen L. Meyers (2006). Lost Trolleys of Queens and Long Island. Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7385-4526-4.
  7. ^ a b c d "Opening of the World Fair Will Assure Jamaica-Flushing Transit Line's 'Comeback': Buses to Replace Trolley Cars by Summer". Long Island Daily Press. January 31, 1937. p. 24. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  8. ^ a b c "Trolleys Doomed At College Point: Line Will Be Supplanted by Buses Tomorrow After 46 Years' Service" (PDF). The New York Times. August 22, 1937. Retrieved January 4, 2016.
  9. ^ a b "Trolley Route Paving Petitioned; Jamaica-Flushing Car Line Soon to Be Motorized; 164th Street Right-of-Way to Be Used for Buses". Long Island Daily Press. November 27, 1936. p. 32. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  10. ^ a b c d "FLUSHING TROLLEY LINE SCRAPPED; Electric Car Makes Final Run at Dawn; Buses Begin Service on 164th Street With Temporary Detour". Long Island Daily Press. August 10, 1937. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  11. ^ a b c "Building the Trolley from Sound to Ocean; Permits Granted To-day to the New York and North Shore Road to Erect Pole; From Flushing to Jamaica; Will Connect With the Long Island Electric Road to Rockaway-Work Begun To-day". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. Jamaica, Long Island. July 21, 1899. p. 3. Retrieved January 4, 2016 – via
  12. ^ New York (State). Public Service Commission. First District (1913). Reports of Decisions. pp. 60–. Retrieved January 3, 2016.
  13. ^ Kevin Walsh and the Greater Astoria Historical Society (December 9, 2013). Forgotten Queens. Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 978-1-4671-2065-4. Retrieved January 3, 2016.
  14. ^ Seyfried, Vincent F. (1961). Long Island Electric R'Y. (Jamaica Central R'YS) With N.Y. + L.I. Traction Connections... F. E. Reifschneider. Retrieved December 30, 2015 – via
  15. ^ Moses King (1914). King's how to See New York: A Complete Trustworthy Guide Book ; 100 Illustrations, the Latest Map, Complete Index. King. p. 13. Retrieved January 3, 2016.
  16. ^ "Queens Bus Map" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. December 2017. Retrieved April 24, 2018.
  17. ^
  18. ^ a b c "Flushing Bus Line Opens: College Point Service Replaces 46-Year-Old Trolley Route" (PDF). The New York Times. August 24, 1937. Retrieved January 4, 2016.
  19. ^ "Company Profile". Jamaica Buses, Inc. Archived from the original on January 25, 2006. Retrieved October 13, 2015.
  20. ^ Sparberg, Andrew J. (October 1, 2014). From a Nickel to a Token: The Journey from Board of Transportation to MTA. Fordham University Press. ISBN 978-0-8232-6190-1.
  21. ^ a b "Last of Trolleys in Queens Doomed: Board Votes Bus Franchise That Will Leave Street Cars Only in Small Area" (PDF). The New York Times. December 19, 1936. Retrieved January 3, 2016.
  22. ^ "Queens-Nassau Lines Bus Service Starts". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 1, 1937. Retrieved January 4, 2016 – via
  23. ^ a b "Transit Appeal Carried Over to July 8 by Fertig". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 3, 1940. Retrieved January 4, 2016 – via
  24. ^ "Queens-Nassau Lines Win Bus Contest Award: Woodside Man Accepts Plaque; Harvey Letter Praises Company" (PDF). Long Island Star-Journal. August 15, 1939. p. 16. Retrieved January 4, 2016.
  25. ^ "Queens Trolley Firm Trades Roadway for Bus Franchise". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 2, 1937. p. 4. Retrieved January 4, 2016 – via
  26. ^ "NEW YORK CITY TRANSIT ROUTES". Retrieved December 31, 2015.
  27. ^ "164th Street Opened With Ceremonies: Jamaica, Flushing Chambers See Boom of Improvement". Long Island Daily Press. August 11, 1938. p. 3. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  28. ^ "Bus Route Changes Delayed As 2d Firm Seeks Franchise". Long Island Star-Journal. July 2, 1940. p. 2. Retrieved January 4, 2016.
  29. ^ "Bus Lines Run Again In Queens and Nassau". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. November 17, 1945. p. 1. Retrieved January 4, 2016 – via
  30. ^ a b Roger P. Roess; Gene Sansone (August 23, 2012). The Wheels That Drove New York: A History of the New York City Transit System. Springer Science & Business Media. p. 273. ISBN 978-3-642-30484-2.
  31. ^ Hirshon, Nicholas (March 2, 2006). "BIZ DRIVEN AWAY. BUS REROUTE HURTS SALES, SAY JAMAICA MART OWNERS". Daily News (New York). Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  32. ^ Silverman, Norman (July 26, 2010). "The Merger of 7 Private Bus Companies into MTA Bus" (PDF). American Public Transportation Association, Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 16, 2015. Retrieved October 16, 2015.
  33. ^ Woodberry, Jr., Warren (February 24, 2005). "MAJOR BUS CO. TO JOIN MTA". Daily News (New York). Retrieved January 4, 2016.
  34. ^ "The MTA 2006 ANNUAL REPORT: Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the Year Ended December 31, 2006 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the Year Ended December 31, 2006" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. May 1, 2007. Retrieved December 28, 2015.
  35. ^ "2007 Annual Report: Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the Year Ended December 31, 2007" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. December 31, 2007. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  36. ^ "Planned Service Changes: Effective Monday, April 15, 2013". Photobucket. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. 2013. Retrieved December 29, 2015.
  37. ^ "Flushing to Jamaica Select Bus Service Stakeholder Meeting June 11, 2014" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority, New York City Department of Transportation. June 11, 2014. Retrieved January 4, 2016.
  38. ^ Toure, Madina (January 22, 2015). "NE Queens leaders wary of Select Bus Service proposal". Times Ledger. Retrieved July 6, 2015.
  39. ^ "Effective November 29: Q44 Select Bus Service". Metropolitan Transportation Authority. 2015. Retrieved November 15, 2015.
  40. ^ a b "Northeast Queens Bus Study" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. September 2015. Retrieved December 11, 2015.
  41. ^ "Transit & Bus Committee Meeting June 2016" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. June 17, 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on August 7, 2016. Retrieved June 17, 2016.

External linksEdit