Sunday, July 27, 2014

What's wrong with MTA NYC Transit?

What is wrong with MTA New York City Transit, the world's largest subway system ever built?


Don't get me wrong, the NYC subway system is one of the best deals around.  You can travel from Eastchester in the Bronx to East New York in Brooklyn for only $2.50.  Or if you really want to stretch your fare, how about Wakefield-241st Street in the Bronx to Tottenville in Staten Island via. a well timed ferry connection?  The subway takes me to work and back home, I have no complaints about that. On-time performance is not like one of MTA's sister agencies, Metro-North Commuter railroad with a on-time performance of over 95 percent systemwide, but the subway runs very well compared to the dark days of the early 1980's when nearly half of all train runs were cancelled due to poor maintenance.   MTA NYC Transit has also implemented new customer-friendly initiatives. such as the Weekender app, PA/CIS (Public Address/Customer Information Screens for the IRT numbered lines, the 42nd Street shuttle and the L line, Select Bus Service (SBS+) and Bustime.  All this is so wonderful for customers to use in today's mobile world.  But NYC Transit suffers greatly from a lack of oversight in disseminating information to the millions of customers who ride the subways and buses daily.   Either NYCT is ignorant on what their publish or fail to monitor their operations.  Sometimes they outright refuse to post certain service changes, hoping that no one will take notice.  Other times they install a sign which has the wrong bus route or post a location which was closed years ago on their neighborhood maps and they fester for years, sometimes decades before they get fixed. It's a matter on how the information is distributed/posted, and how accurate the information is.  More importantly, how deficient information is addressed and correct in a timely manner, which should be in a couple of days, not months and years.

This blog series will explore the many areas within NYC Transit (maps, timetables, service notices, event notices, announcements, etc.) and how they can improve on these areas.  Due to the large amount of content, this blog post is divided into 5 parts:

Part 1 touches base with announcements and how NYCT fails to address this issue

Part 2 looks are some of the errors and how long they have been left unnoticed by NYCT employees and senior management.

Part 3 examines areas where NYC Transit fails to tell the millions of customers about certain palnned and unplanned service changes, many of then intentionally. 

Part 4 explores the recent rash of major service disruptions, some from NYC Transit and other from LIRR/Metro-North and how there is an absence of communication or how . 

Part 5 offers suggestions for NYC Transit to consider in their day-to-day operations.

I will try to publish at least two parts a week. 

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