archBOSTON.org

Go Back   archBOSTON.org > Boston's Built Environment > Transit and Infrastructure

Transit and Infrastructure All things T or civilly engineered within Boston Metro.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 06-05-2007, 11:46 PM   #1
czsz
Senior Member
 
czsz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: brooklyn
Posts: 6,052
What's the rationale for shutting the T at midnight without proper compensation in the form of night buses? Or taxis freed from balkanizing regulations? Those issues, plus oceans of existing, planned, and ultimately superfluous parking can only encourage one activity in an area laden with restaurants (existing and planned) and booze cruises: drunk driving.
czsz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2007, 09:26 AM   #2
belmont square
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 365
The T needed to cut its bus operating costs, and the Night Owl service was performing very poorly. Three of the routes had high ridership (B Line, Red Line to Cambridge, and the 39 along Huntington Ave) and one route was gradually increasing (the Blue Line route to East Boston). The rest of the routes were all dogs.

The problem is that the T felt it needed to provide an equivalent level of late night service across the urban service area. If it could just serve the four routes mentioned above, it would not be such a drag on operating costs. Unfortunately, the vast majority of riders on the three non-Eastie routes were intoxicated students--right or wrong, not a market that gets a lot of sympathy from decision-makers. The drunk driving issue is legitimate, but it should probably be addressed at the State House (in the form of additional funding support for the MBTA specifically for late night service) rather than out of the MBTA's meager operating budget.
belmont square is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2007, 10:16 AM   #3
nico
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Chelsea
Posts: 413
In my experience for people in and around the city, I would say that cabs are the most important form of transportation that need to be improved for the night-time entertainment crowd in Boston. Trains and buses need to be drastically improved for commuters, but for going out for the night it's much easier for people to bounce around by cab.

For people coming into town from further out; The city should purchase an old, out of commission aircraft carrier(s), and dock it in the harbor. People driving into Boston could park on the ship and then catch a shuttle to whichever neighborhood they want to go to.
Didn't they just decommission the JFK? Makes sense to me.
nico is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2007, 01:21 PM   #4
bosman
Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 53
The problem with Boston is that, unlike other major cities, there really is no demand for much for anything much past midnight. Boston isn't an all-night city like NYC, for example. I think that some of these new developments (Fan Pier being one of them) are trying to change that a little, but other than a few select areas, it isn't worth the cost to run subways at full capacity.
__________________
Visit: http://bostondevelopment.bloggles.info/
bosman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2007, 01:24 PM   #5
czsz
Senior Member
 
czsz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: brooklyn
Posts: 6,052
That's an odd, if creative idea, nico. I'm not sure the harbor would keep its ambience were it packed with gargantuan floating parking platforms, though.

Re: drunken students - how do these kids generally get back to campus without the Night Owl busses? Cab pooling? If so, expanding cab access is a relatively cheap and straightforward way to improve the situation.

As for State House funding - is the lack of funds accorded to the T a function of representation, perhaps? The number of rural and suburban delegates in Mass. surely eclipses those representing towns and cities served by rapid transit. I've heard this brought up before as a rationale for why the T aggressively expanded commuter rail service over the past decade with few improvements in inner city service (it may also be a function of the users of the latter systems - transient college students, poor minorities, etc., vs. middle to upper class suburbanites).
czsz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2007, 03:46 PM   #6
jass
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 3,927
Quote:
Originally Posted by bosman
The problem with Boston is that, unlike other major cities, there really is no demand for much for anything much past midnight. Boston isn't an all-night city like NYC, for example. I think that some of these new developments (Fan Pier being one of them) are trying to change that a little, but other than a few select areas, it isn't worth the cost to run subways at full capacity.
There definitely is demand until 2:30am, at least on weekends.

That has to be the first thing that is changed, keep the busiest routes open until 2:45am on weekends.

Even if it means truncated service. Top 10 bus routes, (57, 1 and 39 are no-brainers), Green line service to certain points (no e line service since the 39 can do it), no high speed line, and so on.
jass is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2007, 04:12 PM   #7
ChunkyMonkey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Sweden
Posts: 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by bosman
The problem with Boston is that, unlike other major cities, there really is no demand for much for anything much past midnight. Boston isn't an all-night city like NYC, for example. I think that some of these new developments (Fan Pier being one of them) are trying to change that a little, but other than a few select areas, it isn't worth the cost to run subways at full capacity.
I don't even think the London Underground or Paris Metro run 24 hours. Even so, it's unfair to compare Boston to those mega cities. The T should expand its network through projects like the Urban Ring rather than worry about running 24 hours.
ChunkyMonkey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2007, 04:35 PM   #8
jass
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 3,927
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChunkyMonkey
Quote:
Originally Posted by bosman
The problem with Boston is that, unlike other major cities, there really is no demand for much for anything much past midnight. Boston isn't an all-night city like NYC, for example. I think that some of these new developments (Fan Pier being one of them) are trying to change that a little, but other than a few select areas, it isn't worth the cost to run subways at full capacity.
I don't even think the London Underground or Paris Metro run 24 hours. Even so, it's unfair to compare Boston to those mega cities. The T should expand its network through projects like the Urban Ring rather than worry about running 24 hours.
Not the metro no, but most cities have "night owl" service using bsues along key routes.
jass is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2007, 05:13 PM   #9
Bobby Digital
banished
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 222
Theres enough cabs in boston.... maybe not out towards allston and brighton, but downtown boston, theres cabs.... never had a problem with cabs...

except for cabbies that refuse to go to Dot. I've had to front cabbies $20 several times to get them to go there.
Bobby Digital is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2007, 11:32 AM   #10
nico
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Chelsea
Posts: 413
I'd have to disagree Bobby. Boston proper does have a problem w/cabs. First off, they're outrageously priced, and you have to call for them. I've never had any luck hailing (sp?) a cab. They don't want to go to Dot, and from the airport they won't take you to East Boston or Chelsea.
nico is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2007, 12:05 PM   #11
PerfectHandle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 218
Boston is a terrible cab city. I have trouble pretty much every time I try to take a cab.
PerfectHandle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2007, 12:28 PM   #12
Beton Brut
Senior Member
 
Beton Brut's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Orient Heights
Posts: 3,688
Quote:
Originally Posted by nico
They don't want to go to Dot, and from the airport they won't take you to East Boston or Chelsea.
I can't speak to Dorchester (never taken a cab there), but I've taken cabs home to the Heights on many occasions...You do need to watch the drivers and make sure they don't wack you for the tunnel fee, as you're going in the other direction...The cab-starters (overpaid Massport ne'erdowells) are supposed to make sure you get a cab to where you need to go, and don't get hosed in the process...
Beton Brut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2007, 01:06 PM   #13
belmont square
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 365
Quote:
Boston is a terrible cab city.
If by terrible cab city, you mean terrible compared to NY, I'd agree. But I don't think any other American city is clearly better (its a wash with SF, Chi and DC in my opinion, and DC's fare structure is ridiculous).
belmont square is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2007, 01:27 PM   #14
atlrvr
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 325
I rely on cabs for going anywhere that the T doesn't (or doesn't efficiently) and I've never had a problem with Boston Cab or Metro Cab....the others I don't recommend, especially Top Cab. That said, I've been ripped off by cabbies in the suburbs more than in the city....out there they've turned off their meter and pulled fare quotes out of their ass.

In the city's its never been hard to hail one, but I also keep the two cab cos I prefer programmed in my cell phone. The only time I've had problems is during morning rush hour....the dispatchers always claim that everyone's busy and its hard to hail them because they are all full.

To somehow tie this back into the thread at hand, if the Seaport district takes off as an entertainment/nighttime area, the cabbies will be present, just like they are in all the other nighttime spots.
atlrvr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2007, 01:28 PM   #15
nico
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Chelsea
Posts: 413
When you take a cab to anywhere in Chelsea or East Boston, the cabbie is supposed to get a pass to skip the line when he returns to the airport. Reason being that he waits in line for a half hour, and then makes a 5 minute run. Unfortunately, the guys who give out these passes can be assholes, and I've had them deny my driver the pass..which makes me feel like an ass. The first time my girlfriend tried to get a cab from the airport to our place, the driver pulled over and told her to get out.
nico is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2007, 04:45 PM   #16
Bobby Digital
banished
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 222
Cabs in Boston arent that expensive or unreasonable. Ive been to cities where they charge a flat rate PER PERSON to something that is 8 blocks away.

I hail cabs all the time, no problems. Half of them are full, but wait 2 minutes, you will get one. I've hailed cabs at 4am on comm ave in brookline. Theres no big cab problem in boston.
Bobby Digital is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2007, 05:45 PM   #17
ablarc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 3,528
Quote:
Originally Posted by belmont square
If by terrible cab city, you mean terrible compared to NY, I'd agree. But I don't think any other American city is clearly better (its a wash with SF, Chi and DC in my opinion, and DC's fare structure is ridiculous).
Agreed, but Chicago's better than the others; the cabbies are Pakistanis training for NASCAR. Their specialty is missing pedestrians by a hair's breadth. They also do absolutely spectacular U-turns --sometimes as controlled skids.

Thrilling.
ablarc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2007, 04:43 AM   #18
TC
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Boston
Posts: 165
Can anyone explain to me why the cabs in Boston can't coordinate to make the light on top of the cab actually mean something?

My only problem is that I spend too much time trying to flag down cabs that already have passengers. How hard is it to turn the light on when looking for a fare and off when you have one. In that respect Boston is second class compared to NY.

And I can imagine this is also an issue for our out of town conventioneers who may be used to this simple procedure which is ignored in MA.
TC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2007, 12:46 PM   #19
bosman
Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 53
I found the following article that relates to our discussion about the transportation situation in Boston.

Night Owl bus service comeback for Boston?
Late-night bus service gets a voice
Danielle Dreilinger, ddreilinger@bostonnow.com

Late night MBTA bus service could make a comeback. A proposed bill would reinstate Night Owl buses along subway routes until 2:30 a.m. Thursday through Sunday.

Service ended in June 2005 because "the T could not afford to operate an extraordinarily expensive service that was used by very few people," said MBTA spokesman Joe Pesaturo.

House sponsor state Rep. Michael Moran (D-Allston/Brighton) said the Night Owl was an alternative to drunk driving.

T Riders Union community organizer Rene Mardones said although getting home from night shifts was "a big issue" for Chelsea residents, restoring Night Owl service is not a priority because of the MBTA's financial issues.

Published on Fri, Jun 8, 2007

http://www.bostonnow.com/news/local/.../08/night_owl/
__________________
Visit: http://bostondevelopment.bloggles.info/
bosman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2007, 12:59 PM   #20
Beton Brut
Senior Member
 
Beton Brut's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Orient Heights
Posts: 3,688
Quote:
Originally Posted by House sponsor state Rep. Michael Moran (D-Allston/Brighton)

...the Night Owl was an alternative to drunk driving.
I'm all for better late-night service on the T, but isn't the best alternative to drunk driving having a designated driver and/or having the personal responsibility to not get too shit-faced to safely and legally operate a motor vehicle?

That said, running some sort of service subway through 2:45 AM, and hourly overnight buses is what we should expect from the T.
Beton Brut is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Chinatown's late-night feasts fading away statler General 4 03-15-2009 08:14 PM
Saturday is Hockey Night in Portland Corey Greater New England 1 01-09-2007 08:28 AM
Portland's Night skyline Patrick Greater New England 19 12-06-2006 03:25 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:25 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.3
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.