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Old 05-04-2012, 01:57 AM   #1561
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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Originally Posted by jass View Post
I had no trouble riding their system. The one odd thing was how EMPTY it was. Philly is many time bigger than Boston, where the hell are the people?....
Philly's population (1.5 M) within the city limits of 143 Sq. Mi) are just Boston (617,594 within city limits of 48.43 square miles) + the inside of Rt-128 or so -- after you leave Broad Street and the CBD the density in Philly falls off fairly quickly to Arlington-scale

Fewer people work in downtown Philly than do in FID + Back Bay in Boston and surroundings -- when you throw in Cambridge probably nearly twice as many people work in Boston than do in Philly proper

Heavy rail systems

Rank System Year opened Weekdayridership Date Route mile Riders/mile
1 New York City 1904 7,512,100 2010 Q1 229 33,786
2 Mexico City Metro 1969 3,860,000 1993 110 40,000
3 Montreal Metro 1966 1,111,700 2011 Q1 40.6 27,388
4 Toronto subway 1954 948,100 2010 Q1 38 24,950
5 Washington Metro 1976 919,300 2010 Q1 106.3 9,660
6 Chicago 'L' 1892 638,100 2010 Q1 136.7 4,687
7 MBTA Boston 1897 478,600 2010 Q1 65.5 7,417
8 SkyTrain Vancouver 1985 426,500 2010 Q1 43 9,918
9 BART San Francisco 1972 343,200 2010 Q1 104 3,681
10 SEPTA Philadelphia 1907 314,800 2010 Q1 25 12,720


Light rail systems:

Rank System Daily boardings Route miles boardings/mile As of Opened
1 MBTA Green Line + Ashmont–Mattapan High Speed Line 233,300 25.4 mi + 2.6 mi 8,332 Q4 2011 1897
2 San Francisco Muni Metro and F Market Line 162,400 36.8 mi + 8.8 mi 3,561 Q4 2011 1912, 1878
3 Los Angeles County Metro Rail Blue Line, Green Line and Gold Line 154,500 61.7 mi 2,504 Q4 2011 1990
4 MAX Light Rail Portland 126,500 53 mi 2,387 Q4 2011 1986
5 SEPTA Subway-Surface Lines,Suburban Trolley Lines, and Girard Avenue Trolley* 110,100 60 mi 1,835 Q4 2011 1906
6 San Diego Trolley 103,400 53.5 mi 1,933 Q4 2011 1981
7 DART: Red, Green, and Blue lines MATA streetcar Dallas 83,400 72 mi
3.6 mi 1,103 Q4 2011 1996
8 Denver RTD, The Ride Light Rail 65,800 35 mi 1,880 Q4 2011 1994
9 UTA TRAX Salt Lake City 59,100 35.3 mi 1,674 Q4 2011 1999
10 MetroLink St. Louis 52,300 46 mi 1,137 Q4 2011 1993


CR systems:

Rank System Metropolitan area Province / State Daily Ridership (weekday)
1) Long Island Rail Road New York City–Long Island New York 352,000
2) Metra Chicago Illinois / Wisconsin 304,700
3) New Jersey Transit Rail Operations North Jersey; New York City
Philadelphia – Atlantic City New Jersey / New York / Pennsylvania 301,746
4) Metro-North Railroad New York City; New Haven; Poughkeepsie New York / Connecticut 298,500
5) GO Transit Toronto–Golden Horseshoe Ontario 180,000

6) MBTA Commuter Rail Boston Massachusetts / Rhode Island 130,600

7) SEPTA Regional Rail Philadelphia Pennsylvania/New Jersey/Delaware 127,200

8) Agence métropolitaine de transport Montreal Quebec 66,100
9) Caltrain San Francisco–San Jose California 41,100

100 Metrolink Los Angeles–Southern California California 39,600
11) MARC Train Baltimore–Washington, DC Maryland / West Virginia 33,700

Last edited by whighlander; 05-04-2012 at 11:35 PM. Reason: improved clarity and readability
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Old 05-04-2012, 07:34 AM   #1562
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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Originally Posted by whighlander View Post
Philly's population (1.5 M) within the city limits of 143 Sq. Mi) are just Boston (617,594 within city limits of 48.43 square miles) + the inside of Rt-128 or so -- after you leave Broad Street and the CBD the density in Philly falls off fairly quickly to Arlington-scale

Fewer people work in downtown Philly than do in FID + Back Bay in Boston and surroundings -- when you throw in Cambridge probably nearly twice as many people work in Boston than do in Philly proper

Heavy rail systems

Rank System Year opened Weekdayridership Date Route mile Riders/mile
1 New York City 1904 7,512,100 2010 Q1 229 33,786
2 Mexico City Metro 1969 3,860,000 1993 110 40,000
3 Montreal Metro 1966 1,111,700 2011 Q1 40.6 27,388
4 Toronto subway 1954 948,100 2010 Q1 38 24,950
5 Washington Metro 1976 919,300 2010 Q1 106.3 9,660
6 Chicago 'L' 1892 638,100 2010 Q1 136.7 4,687
7 MBTA Boston 1897 478,600 2010 Q1 65.5 7,417
8 SkyTrain Vancouver 1985 426,500 2010 Q1 43 9,918
9 BART San Francisco 1972 343,200 2010 Q1 104 3,681
10 SEPTA Philadelphia 1907 314,800 2010 Q1 25 12,720


Light rail systems:

Rank System Daily boardings Route miles boardings/mile As of Opened
1 MBTA Green Line + Ashmont–Mattapan High Speed Line 233,300 25.4 mi + 2.6 mi 8,332 Q4 2011 1897
2 San Francisco Muni Metro and F Market Line 162,400 36.8 mi + 8.8 mi 3,561 Q4 2011 1912, 1878
3 Los Angeles County Metro Rail Blue Line, Green Line and Gold Line 154,500 61.7 mi 2,504 Q4 2011 1990
4 MAX Light Rail Portland 126,500 53 mi 2,387 Q4 2011 1986
5 SEPTA Subway-Surface Lines,Suburban Trolley Lines, and Girard Avenue Trolley* 110,100 60 mi 1,835 Q4 2011 1906
6 San Diego Trolley 103,400 53.5 mi 1,933 Q4 2011 1981
7 DART: Red, Green, and Blue lines MATA streetcar Dallas 83,400 72 mi
3.6 mi (5.8 km) 1,103 Q4 2011 1996
8 Denver RTD, The Ride Light Rail 65,800 35 mi 1,880 Q4 2011 1994
9 UTA TRAX Salt Lake City 59,100 35.3 mi 1,674 Q4 2011 1999
10 MetroLink St. Louis 52,300 46 mi 1,137 Q4 2011 1993


CR systems:

Rank System Metropolitan area Province / State Daily Ridership (weekday)
1) Long Island Rail Road New York City–Long Island New York 352,000
2) Metra Chicago Illinois / Wisconsin 304,700
3) New Jersey Transit Rail Operations North Jersey; New York City
Philadelphia – Atlantic City New Jersey / New York / Pennsylvania 301,746
4) Metro-North Railroad New York City; New Haven; Poughkeepsie New York / Connecticut 298,500
5) GO Transit Toronto–Golden Horseshoe Ontario 180,000

6) MBTA Commuter Rail Boston Massachusetts / Rhode Island 130,600

7) SEPTA Regional Rail Philadelphia Pennsylvania/New Jersey/Delaware 127,200

8) Agence métropolitaine de transport Montreal Quebec 66,100
9) Caltrain San Francisco–San Jose California 41,100

100 Metrolink Los Angeles–Southern California California 39,600
11) MARC Train Baltimore–Washington, DC Maryland / West Virginia 33,700
One correction to the CR ridership rankings: Ferrocarril Suburbano de la Zona Metropolitana del Valle de México in metro Mexico City does 140K daily ridership, so that slots #6 after GO Transit with MBCR at #7.

Also, the Metro North numbers are artificially depressed for 2011 because Hurricane Irene shut down the Port Jervis Line for the entire Fall due to severe washouts, and the Danbury Line for a full week after the storm. They were also hampered by 1/5 of their New Haven Line fleet being out of service parts of last winter, causing a lot of sold-out short consists to be run on the New Haven Line during rush hour...sharply lowering seating capacity and revenue intake on the most overall-profitable weekday trains. That problem's been licked for '12 now that the new M8 fleet is in service and has brought their baseline car assignments back to full strength.

The '12 rankings are going to put MNRR back in the #2 spot where it's traditionally been, so that's a strictly one-year blip. They just set a new ridership record for Q1 and topped Long Island RR in quarterly ridership for the first time ever, so the final tallies are going to be breathing down LIRR's neck rather than simply outpacing Metra. That's how severely they were punished by acts of God and M8 delivery delays last year.

Last edited by F-Line to Dudley; 05-04-2012 at 07:51 AM.
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Old 05-04-2012, 09:41 AM   #1563
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

I went to Philly for the first time last weekend and rode the SEPTA. The train never broke down (point to SEPTA), but the stations and trains all looked like they were about to crumble into the ground (point to MBTA). Personally, I'd rather have the trains run than look nice, but it was eye opening to see that the MBTA isn't exactly the worst thing in the world.

Edit: sorry, I should have clarified that I don't actually think the MBTA is the worst thing in the world. Just pointing out that our collective perception of it is negative, and comparing it to other systems is a good exercise in reality.

Last edited by underground; 05-04-2012 at 11:01 AM.
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:56 AM   #1564
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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Originally Posted by underground View Post
I went to Philly for the first time last weekend and road the SEPTA. The train never broke down (point to SEPTA), but the stations and trains all looked like they were about to crumble into the ground (point to MBTA). Personally, I'd rather have the trains run than look nice, but it was eye opening to see that the MBTA isn't exactly the worst thing in the world.
The MBTA is hardly the worst transit system in the world. 9 out of 10 subway stations in the NYC subway look like junk.

I ride the T to/from work 5 days a week plus some weekends and more often than not, the service is fine, trains don't break down, no delays and whatnot. The bad instances on the T get magnified and blown up by the riders.
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Old 05-04-2012, 11:33 PM   #1565
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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Originally Posted by underground View Post
I went to Philly for the first time last weekend and rode the SEPTA. The train never broke down (point to SEPTA), but the stations and trains all looked like they were about to crumble into the ground (point to MBTA). Personally, I'd rather have the trains run than look nice, but it was eye opening to see that the MBTA isn't exactly the worst thing in the world.

Edit: sorry, I should have clarified that I don't actually think the MBTA is the worst thing in the world. Just pointing out that our collective perception of it is negative, and comparing it to other systems is a good exercise in reality.
Uground -- you obviously must be too young (or perhaps too old) to remember the Dinkins days of the NYC Transit when every train was 'tagged" by some gang, glass was routinely broken and the seats were used as toilets -- some stations had full time Caps in them and still had rampant crime. I was there one day when just after I left Times Square for the WTC area someone was murdered on the platform. When I got back that afternoon to my hotel a drunk was uninating on the station wall 3 PM) and all of the lights in one long strip had been shot or beaten out.

London often has whole stations shut do to emergency reconstructions (you can see a hand lettered sign in the entrance area) and many many trains have cars with doors that don't work (stuck open / stuck closed or just oscilating)

Actually given its age -- the T does quite well as a North American integrated urban transit system (heavy rail, light rail, commuter rail, buses and ferries) which combined with some walking can take you most anywhere you want to go in downtown Boston and much of Cambridge -- see my posting of the rankings with the editorial remarks by F-Lne
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Old 05-05-2012, 11:45 AM   #1566
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

This was the vent that arguably was the "tipping point" in NY City crime (after Bernard Goetz, of course).

http://articles.latimes.com/1990-09-..._brian-watkins

7 Arrested in Fatal Stabbing of N.Y. Tourist
September 04, 1990|From Times Wire Services

Quote:
NEW YORK — Seven young men were charged Monday in the stabbing death of a 22-year-old Utah tourist killed on a subway platform as he tried to protect his mother, police said.

Yulla Garry Morales, 19, of Queens, and six other young men were charged with murder and robbery Monday night, detective Joseph DeMartino told a news conference. The names of the other suspects were not released.

The youths were charged in the death of Brian Watkins of Provo, Utah, who was visiting New York with his family to watch the U.S. Open tennis tournament. He was fatally stabbed as he waited on the platform of a midtown Manhattan subway station at 10:20 p.m. Sunday, DeMartino said.

Police believe Morales wielded the knife, the detective said.

"We are certain that these seven are the principal actors," DeMartino said, adding that more arrests were possible.

Watkins and his 26-year-old brother, Todd, had jumped to their mother's aid after the seven youths attacked her and their father, Transit Police spokesman Al O'Leary said.

Watkins died at St. Vincent's Hospital. His mother and father, who also were injured, were treated at the same hospital and released. Todd Watkins and his wife, Michelle, were not injured, O'Leary said.

Police said the family had planned to ride the subway to Tavern on the Green in Central Park, just two stops away.

Members of the family were "huge tennis buffs," a friend said, and the trip to the Open at the National Tennis Center in Queens was an annual event.

The family's Mormon bishop, David G. (Doc) Hansen, said Brian Watkins was a tennis star at Provo High School and went to Idaho State University on a tennis scholarship. In addition, he taught the sport at a club in Provo, where his parents, Sherwin and Karen, are ardent tennis players.

Sharon Sandgren, a family friend in Provo, described Brian Watkins as "an easy going, soft-spoken guy. He wasn't a violent person. If he was going to get in a fight, something would have really had to provoke him."
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Old 05-05-2012, 09:24 PM   #1567
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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Originally Posted by JohnAKeith View Post
This was the vent that arguably was the "tipping point" in NY City crime (after Bernard Goetz, of course).

http://articles.latimes.com/1990-09-..._brian-watkins

7 Arrested in Fatal Stabbing of N.Y. Tourist
September 04, 1990|From Times Wire Services
John -- exactly -- luckily Boston has never had that level of crime on the T or the gross levels of destructiveness that NYC used to feature -- and indeed laud (some did): every train was "tagged" by some gang, glass was routinely broken and the seats were used as toilets, every station looked like a proverbial slum and homeless shelter, most of the lights were broken, there was more urine on the floors of the stations than in any Manhattan toilet

Instead most of the T crime involves perps:
- grabing women's purses,
- women's bodies,
- men's wallets,
- men's bodies (usually parts of their own),
- a few gangs beating on each other and occasionally an unsuspecting passenger
- relaively small amounts of vandalism of the trains and stations
- some enterprising perverts using cameras in innovative fashion for their own ammusement

yea we got them -- but that's kinda the noise you expect in a city
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Old 05-05-2012, 09:46 PM   #1568
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

Boston at its worst was never anywhere near NYC subway crime pre-Giuliani. Everyone is understandably upset about crime today, but in comparison to what it was from the Great Society until the return to effective policing in the early 1990s, we are living in a relatively crime free era.
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Old 05-05-2012, 11:56 PM   #1569
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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Originally Posted by mass88 View Post
The MBTA is hardly the worst transit system in the world. 9 out of 10 subway stations in the NYC subway look like junk.

I ride the T to/from work 5 days a week plus some weekends and more often than not, the service is fine, trains don't break down, no delays and whatnot. The bad instances on the T get magnified and blown up by the riders.
I ride the T for work and to go out... 95% of the time its fine. And when it breaks down it does suck. The fact that it gets blown out of proportion is probably more because it is so overwhelmingly relied on by so many people, and not that its operational track record is relatively terrible. However, when the MBTA does mess up, its does so in a spectacularly horrible way.
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:36 AM   #1570
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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in comparison to what it was from the Great Society
I see what you did there.
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Old 05-07-2012, 08:36 AM   #1571
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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Originally Posted by choo View Post
I ride the T for work and to go out... 95% of the time its fine. And when it breaks down it does suck. The fact that it gets blown out of proportion is probably more because it is so overwhelmingly relied on by so many people, and not that its operational track record is relatively terrible. However, when the MBTA does mess up, its does so in a spectacularly horrible way.
I read recently that relationships need to have things go well 4/5 of the time for a couple to stay together (aka, bad things happening even 1/5 of the time can kill them). People's "relationship" with the T seems to have an even higher threshold for success.

Last edited by underground; 05-07-2012 at 01:12 PM.
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Old 05-07-2012, 01:29 PM   #1572
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

On the whole, the T is far more reliable and predictable than driving in Boston at rush hour. You can pretty much guarantee that 128 and I-93 are going to be a mess even in the best case scenario. When there is an accident, forget it. With the T, I can at least predict reasonably how long it's going to take me.
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Old 05-07-2012, 01:46 PM   #1573
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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Originally Posted by underground View Post
I went to Philly for the first time last weekend and rode the SEPTA. The train never broke down (point to SEPTA), but the stations and trains all looked like they were about to crumble into the ground (point to MBTA). Personally, I'd rather have the trains run than look nice, but it was eye opening to see that the MBTA isn't exactly the worst thing in the world.

Edit: sorry, I should have clarified that I don't actually think the MBTA is the worst thing in the world. Just pointing out that our collective perception of it is negative, and comparing it to other systems is a good exercise in reality.
I also want to add that the Blue Line, while more modern, did a terrible job arranging the seats inside the train. It's incredibly cramp inside the cars.
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Old 05-07-2012, 01:51 PM   #1574
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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I also want to add that the Blue Line, while more modern, did a terrible job arranging the seats inside the train. It's incredibly cramp inside the cars.
You should see the Berlin U-Bahn (older trains, not Type H)... Now that is cozy.
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Old 05-07-2012, 09:23 PM   #1575
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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I read recently that relationships need to have things go well 4/5 of the time for a couple to stay together (aka, bad things happening even 1/5 of the time can kill them). People's "relationship" with the T seems to have an even higher threshold for success.
You know, I'm all for spontaneity and unpredictability in a relationship but I don't really consider the T's complete hit-or-miss scheduling, rude employees, outdated technology and rundown infrastructure to be all that endearing.

While it certainly isn't the worst system in the world (I mean, anything is better than nothing at all, right?), I'd probably rank my average daily satisfaction level around or below 80 percent. The frequencies of mechanical issues (major and minor), scheduling 'adjustments' (short turns and stand bys), conductors inexplicably shutting doors on people, etc., are all in a days work at the MBTA.

I think a lot of the frustration and negative opinion is born from the general perception that there are so many ways in which the MBTA could be improved but yet there is really never any movement forward. Too bad the MBTA isn't like a significant other that you can just dump and pick up a new whenever you'd like.
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Old 05-07-2012, 10:05 PM   #1576
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

^ It definitely depends which line you're taking. I took the Red Line daily for months and only had a dissatisfactory ride a handful of times. More often than not, it was smooth and pleasant. Seeing you're in Brighton, I'm assuming you're taking Green every day, which has a much, much lower track record. I've taken Green with much less frequency than I take Red, but I experience delays and other issues on Green very often when I do take it. The over-burdened Green Line is the bane of the MBTA rail system, and they desperately need to do something about it.
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Old 05-07-2012, 10:58 PM   #1577
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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^ It definitely depends which line you're taking. I took the Red Line daily for months and only had a dissatisfactory ride a handful of times. More often than not, it was smooth and pleasant. Seeing you're in Brighton, I'm assuming you're taking Green every day, which has a much, much lower track record. I've taken Green with much less frequency than I take Red, but I experience delays and other issues on Green very often when I do take it. The over-burdened Green Line is the bane of the MBTA rail system, and they desperately need to do something about it.
It's really too bad that Brookline didn't offer to collaborate on signal prioritization on the C line when everything was ripped up and OH WAIT THEY DID OFFER TO DO IT AND THE MBTA SAID "fuck you."
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Old 05-07-2012, 11:24 PM   #1578
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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It's really too bad that Brookline didn't offer to collaborate on signal prioritization on the C line when everything was ripped up and OH WAIT THEY DID OFFER TO DO IT AND THE MBTA SAID "fuck you."
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Old 05-08-2012, 12:37 AM   #1579
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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It's really too bad that Brookline didn't offer to collaborate on signal prioritization on the C line when everything was ripped up and OH WAIT THEY DID OFFER TO DO IT AND THE MBTA SAID "fuck you."
No, no. They paid for all the signal prioritization wiring and said, "Here...you just sign off here for these sensors for 2 grand each and give us permission to install them for you and you're all hooked up. And if you're still not convinced we'll trial it at only three intersections and see how you like it, OK?"

...and the MBTA said "fuck you."
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Old 05-08-2012, 06:31 AM   #1580
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Re: Driven By Customer 'Service' Parte Dos

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^ It definitely depends which line you're taking. I took the Red Line daily for months and only had a dissatisfactory ride a handful of times. More often than not, it was smooth and pleasant. Seeing you're in Brighton, I'm assuming you're taking Green every day, which has a much, much lower track record. I've taken Green with much less frequency than I take Red, but I experience delays and other issues on Green very often when I do take it. The over-burdened Green Line is the bane of the MBTA rail system, and they desperately need to do something about it.
Right - which is my point. The Green Line is a good 25+ percent of the MBTA's rapid tranist ridership. Given its current state of disrepair, it isn't all that unreasonable to think upwards of 15-20 percent of all riders have regular, built-in discontents with the system.
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