MTA Looks To Decrease Response Times

10 days ago the MTA announced their plan to spend $1.3 million dollars to decrease their response time to escalator & elevator breakdowns throughout the subway system. The plan calls for more than 300 escalators & elevators to be hooked up to a computerized monitoring system. Here is a brief article about the plan courtesy of New York Times writer William Neuman:

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority plans to spend $1.3 million to hook up more than 300 elevators and escalators in the subways to a computerized monitoring system that would allow it to respond more quickly to breakdowns. The plan is to be submitted this week to the authority’s board for consideration.

The monitoring system has been tested on 44 elevators, and officials are seeking to expand it to all of the elevators and escalators in the subway stations “in order to enable a rapid response” to breakdowns, according to an authority board document.

Broken elevators and escalators are a frequent complaint of subway riders.

In August, New York City Transit, the branch of the authority that runs the subway system, began posting a list of broken elevators and escalators on its Web site, mta.info.

The list, which is updated three times a day, is not always accurate because it depends on transit employees or customers to report breakdowns.

Officials said in August that they hoped to expand the computerized monitoring system, which would allow them to post up-to-date information on breakdowns as they occurred.

On Sunday afternoon, the authority’s Web site listed five elevators in five stations as being out of service. It also said that 18 escalators in 10 stations were not working.

The monitoring system is connected to a central display at a dispatch center for elevator and escalator mechanics.

Michael Harris of the Disabled Riders Coalition, an advocacy group, called the monitors an important improvement. “The M.T.A. has historically had a severe problem in knowing when elevators are or are not in service,” he said.

Paul Fleuranges, a spokesman for New York City Transit, said in an e-mail message, “The ability to be able to monitor all of our assets in real time and respond immediately when a piece of equipment fails will go a long way in improving the availability of these important pieces of machinery relied on by our customers, especially those with special needs.”

There are 158 passenger elevators in the subway system, including 138 in 61 stations that are fully accessible to disabled people, according to the transit agency. There are 169 escalators. The subway system has 468 stations.

The transit agency also provides a telephone number for information on elevator and escalator breakdowns, (800) 734-6772.

While I applaud & support the MTA’s plan to decrease response times, one must pose this question. Why wasn’t such a system in place to begin with? This is one of those ideas which should have been on the drawing board to begin with as it would have probably cost less.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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Staten Island Railway Is No Different

The updates have been extremely rare the last couple of weeks. I have been extremely busy & am now just starting to catch up. Lets get started with the “Rider Report Card” results for the Staten Island Railway. Here is the full breakdown:

Top 10 priorities that Staten Island Railway riders would like to see improvement on:

01. Adequate room on board at rush hour
02. Sense of security in stations
03. Trains depart and arrive as scheduled
04. Sense of security on trains
05. Cleanliness of cars
06. Comfortable temperature in cars
07. Cleanliness of stations
08. Train announcements that are easy to hear
09. Minimal delays during trips
10. Availability of MetroCard Vending Machines

Now here is the entire order of Staten Island Railway riders priorities:

01. Adequate room on board at rush hour
02. Sense of security in stations
03. Trains depart and arrive as scheduled
04. Sense of security on trains
05. Cleanliness of cars
06. Comfortable temperature in cars
07. Cleanliness of stations
08. Train announcements that are easy to hear
09. Minimal delays during trips
10. Availability of MetroCard Vending Machines
11. Station announcements that are easy to hear
12. Turnstiles that are easy to use
13. Lack of scratchitti in cars
14. Lack of graffiti in stations
15. Station announcements that are informative
16. Train announcements that are informative
17. Courtesy and helpfulness of personnel
18. Lack of graffiti in cars
19. Signs in stations that help riders find their way
20. Working elevator at St. George
21. Signs in subway cars that help riders find their way

Now here is the graded breakdown of all 21 categories:

Minimal delays during trips B
Trains depart and arrive as scheduled B-
Adequate room on board at rush hour C-
Sense of security in stations C
Sense of security on trains C
Working elevator at St. George C+
Signs in stations that help riders find their way C+
Signs in cars that help riders find their way C+
Cleanliness of stations C
Cleanliness of cars C
Station announcements that are easy to hear C-
Station announcements that are informative C-
Train announcements that are easy to hear C-
Train announcements that are informative C
Lack of graffiti in stations C
Lack of graffiti in cars C+
Lack of scratchitti in cars C-
Courtesy and helpfulness of station personnel B-
Comfortable temperature in cars C
Turnstiles that are easy to use B-
Availability of MetroCard Vending Machines C

I will be honest, I do not have much to say about these results. I have never ridden the Staten Island Railway so I can’t offer my analysis based on personal experiences. The friends I have who reside in Staten Island don’t ride it so I can’t ask them for opinions. I will however comment how the Staten Island Railway is the first line to not get a B for the “Availability Of MetroCard Vending Machines”. Here is where I have the most shocked look on my face……..

xoxo Transit Blogger

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And So The Day Is Upon Us….

In a matter of hours, the MTA Board will officially vote on & approve their fare & toll hike plan that will punish their most loyal customers. I apologize for the lack of entries the last week as I have been extremely busy. Please check back later today where I will officially catch up on many transit issues that have been in the news the last 7-10 days. Some of the entries will include coverage of the official passing of the fare hike, a proposed “Subway Rider Bill Of Rights”, possible service additions, Second Avenue Subway funding news, & much much more!

xoxo Transit Blogger

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Para Transit Strike Coming To An End?

This might be the case according to news that came out a few days ago. Both The Para Transit Drivers and Mechanics of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1181-1061 & Paratransit Operators Coalition have reached a tentative settlement as of Monday. However the strike will continue until the agreement is ratified as it goes for a vote later today. Lets hope that this contract will be ratified so this strike can end.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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Service Alert 4 Train (Updated: 5:58 pm)

The MTA has posted a service alert regarding 4 train service in the Bronx. Here is the service alert:

Due to a police investigation at the Fordham Road Station, there is no Woodlawn-bound 4 train service from the 161st Street-Yankee Stadium Station to the Woodlawn Station.

Stations being bypassed are: 167th Street, 170th Street, Mt Eden Avenue, 176th Street, Burnside Ave, 183rd Street, Fordham Road, Kingsbridge Road, Bedford Park Boulevard-Lehman College, Mosholu Parkway and Woodlawn

For service to bypassed stations, customers are advised to take b and d train service making nearby station stops along Grand Concourse.

Please expect delays in service on the 4 trains at this time.

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Updated: 5:37 pm

The service alert is due to a 12-9 (person under train) at the Fordham Road station. The jumper who committed suicide was a female student. The power is in the process of being restored. Unfortunately this is the second 12-9 incident involving the 4 line. Exactly one week ago, a person committed suicide by jumping in front of a 4 train at the 170th Street station during the morning rush hour. I wish my best for the crew involved in this incident, especially the train operator.

==========

Updated: 5:48 pm

At this time, there is no Woodlawn bound service between the Burnside Avenue & Kingsbridge Road stations.

==========

Updated: 5:58 pm

The service alert has not been updated. However full local service has resumed with residual delays.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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