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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

T stands for Terrible

Since it was Tip O'Neill who said all politics is local, a timeout for a purely local rant about the MBTA and its plan to raise fares next year. I'd like to make a humble suggestion: how about living up to your promises first?

As a Green Line rider, I'm still waiting for the three-car rush hour trains that have ample room to sit or stand as we make good progress into town. Instead, I am "treated" to cattle cars made by Breda that have fewer seats, narrower aisles and still follow the tradition of passenger stop; red light; passenger stop; red light as it limps into town slower than someone can walk.

And then there is the schedule: two trains a minute or less apart followed by a gap of 10 minutes or more. That creates trains so crowded that drivers need to open all the doors to let the cattle, er, passengers on, forfeiting what is likely thousands of dollars in fares every day.

Or course they will fix that by ending "anomalies" like no outbound fare on the Green Line. That will sure speed things up by only opening one door. And wasn't the premise of the "free" outbound fare a doubling of the inbound fare many years ago?

Of course I can transfer to a bus (additional fare required), where riders are forced to tromp through foot deep snow banks in Kenmore Square to reach a bus that does not have a working destination sign.

I'm sure every rider has his or her own horror stories. All of which fall on the ears of the ultimate horror story: T chairman Dan Grabauskas who told the Globe he drives to work because commuter rail doesn't meet his work schedule.

Once upon a time I rode the T because it was easier than driving. Now I walk because it's easier than taking the T. It's time to join Charlie and fight the fare increase and get Charlie (and the rest of us) off the MTA.


Anonymous cyn said...

You are so right. I drive into Boston frequently, park at Sullivan, take the Orange line into North Station, change to the Green Line and go where I need to go. I have stood on the platform at Sullivan for upwards of 20 minutes waiting for a train and then the stampede begins.....And then there are the elevators at the T stations--there are times I use them because I have a knee that acts up now and again. Of course, you cannot breathe on them cause the stench is so bad...oh and did I mention the elevator at Copley that is down for repairs more than it works? They do need to make some improvements.....

February 26, 2006 8:54 AM  

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