Service Diversions 10/10

I have just updated the service diversions page with the latest scheduled diversions for this weekend & next week (and beyond in some cases). Don’t forget to check in for any changes to the page. I also suggest printing out a copy of the page to use while riding the system. Have a safe & wonderful weekend!

xoxo Transit Blogger

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NYCT To Distribute Rider Reports Cards On The 4 Next Week

Woodlawn bound 4 train approaching the 161st Street-Yankee Stadium stationWoodlawn bound 4 train approaching the 161st Street-Yankee Stadium station. Resized photo courtesy of Eye On Transit.

In a press release that should hit their site soon, MTA’s New York City Transit division announces that the 4 Train will be the next line to be graded by riders. The agency will distribute “Rider Report Cards” to passengers starting next week & will do so for a total of 4 days. Here are the full details:

In our continuing effort to solicit feedback from our customers, MTA New York City Transit is again distributing Rider Report Cards throughout the system. Riders on the 4 are next in line of NYC Transit’s over five million daily subway riders asked to rate the progress of their line since the initial round of report cards was distributed in July 2007.

The report cards are being distributed to riders during the morning rush hours from Tuesday, October 14th through Friday, October 17th. The cards will be handed out at several different stations along the line each day over the four-day period. Grades will be used to identify rider preferences and to gauge how much improvement customers along the 4 line have noticed since last year’s report card.

Again, the Rider Report Card will ask subway riders to grade 21 specific areas of service from an A (Excellent) to an F (Unsatisfactory). Among the areas riders will grade include: car and station cleanliness, safety, security, quality of announcements, and the courtesy and helpfulness of front line customer service staff. Riders will also assign an overall grade for 4 line service. From this list of 21 service attributes, riders are also going to be asked to rank the top three improvements they would like to see made to this line.

The Rider Report Card is once again being distributed in a mailer format, designed to be returned at no cost to the rider. Customers will also have the option of completing the survey on-line, on the MTA website at www.mta.info, where it will be available in 3 languages: English, Spanish and Chinese. From the time the survey begins, riders will have two weeks to mail in their response or to complete the survey online.

Rider Report Card results are posted on line for riders to review once they have been tabulated.

Report cards are being distributed between 7:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. at each station. The schedule for distribution of Rider Report Cards along the 4 line is as follows:

• Tuesday, October 14th – Crown Heights-Utica Avenue, Franklin Avenue, Atlantic Avenue, Nevins Street, and Borough Hall.

• Wednesday, October 15th – Bowling Green, Wall Street, 59th Street, 86th Street, and 125th Street.

• Thursday, October 16th – 138th Street-Grand Concourse, 149th Street, Grand Concourse, 161st Street-Yankee Stadium, 167th Street, and 170th Street.

• Friday, October 17th – Mt. Eden Avenue, 176th Street, Burnside Avenue, 183rd Street, Fordham Road, Kingsbridge Road, Bedford Park Blvd.-Lehman College, Mosholu Parkway, and Woodlawn.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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Senator Schumer Questions The Integrity Of Doctors

The never ending LIRR Disability Benefits Scandal dubbed the “Gravy Train Scandal” by the New York Post, took another turn today after some elected officials held a meeting with officials of the Railroad Retirement Board. After the meeting, Senator Schumer questioned the integrity of doctors who helped retired LIRR employees cash in on disability benefits. Here is a brief article from The Associated Press:

NEW YORK – Sen. Charles Schumer says the high number of Long Island Rail Road employees collecting disability payments may be due to dishonest doctors.

Schumer and Long Island Rep. Tim Bishop on Friday met privately in New York with members of the Railroad Retirement Board, an obscure federal panel. He said afterward: “There’s a feeling that these doctors were not on the level.”

Four separate investigations are under way after it was reported last month that more than 90 percent of LIRR employees were granted disability payments by an obscure federal board, allowing them to collect huge payments every year.

Schumer and Bishop say they asked the board to immediately take a closer look at who is granted disability payments.

I will check & see if Senator Schumer or any other officials issue a press release to talk about the meeting. As always I will keep up with this story as it continues to unfold.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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New South Ferry Station To Open In December

One of the more unheralded projects being worked on over recent time was the completion of a new South Ferry station/terminal. If you have ever rode the 1 train to South Ferry you are well aware of having to be in the first 5 cars to exit the station. How could any of us ever forget the typical holdup at Chambers St where they give you a chance to move up to the first 5 cars. Well thankfully as of this December, all of those little nuances that made the 1 train what it is will come to end as a new South Ferry station opens. Julie Shapiro of the Downtown Express has more in this report:

The new South Ferry station on the 1 subway line will open in December, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced this week. The new station will be big enough to allow all of the cars to load and unload passengers, so riders will no longer have to rush up to the front of the train.

The new platforms will be straight lines, eliminating the need for the moving platforms in the current station. The new station will have three entrances: at the front of the Staten Island Ferry terminal, on a traffic island in front of the terminal and across the street by Battery Park. The M.T.A. may preserve part of the old station.

Click here for the complete report.

This is a welcome relief to many who use the 1 to reach South Ferry. I feel this project will vastly improve service on the 1 train from terminal to terminal.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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Downtown Express Talks About The Fulton Transit Center

The latest issue of the Downtown Express features two transit related stories. The first one looks at how the Fulton Transit Center is stuck in limbo. While it shares the same concerns of being over budget & behind schedule like the World Trade Center Transportation Hub, it does not share any sort of timetable for completion. Julie Shapiro has more in this report:

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority still does not know when the Fulton St. Transit Center will be complete or what the completed structure will look like, but Bill Wheeler, the agency’s planning director, promised City Councilmember Alan Gerson answers soon.

Wheeler spoke at a hearing Gerson held Monday focusing on the World Trade Center site, which will have an underground connection to the Fulton St. Transit Center, bringing together a total of 11 subway lines and the PATH trains. Like the W.T.C. projects, the Fulton hub is over budget and behind schedule, but unlike the Port Authority’s candid assessment of the W.T.C. site, the M.T.A. has yet to release a timetable for the transit center.

Click here for the complete report.

Considering the financial crisis the MTA is currently in, does anyone really expect this project to be completed anytime soon? We will be lucky to have this anywhere close to being up & functioning within the next 5-6 years if you ask me.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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