Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Good Commuter Rail Commutes

So my commutes were good last night and this morning.

For both commutes, my train arrived a few minutes ahead of schedule. This is good because the evening P529 train is now leaving at 6:15 p.m. instead of 6:05 p.m. In the scheme of things, that is a huge difference in time because typically the 6:05 p.m. trains ran pretty much on schedule.

Not to be a "Negative Nelly," but I will bet this scenario will happen. The Worcester-Framingham commuter rail trains will perform well for the next 6 months. Then the MBTA will raise fares and not expect a lot of backlash because, "hey - the on-time performance is actually good!" I hope this doesn't happen, but there really hasn't been a lot to cause me to be enthusiastic and positive about the commuter rail service. Blah!

Trying to remain positive this morning, I saw the following post on BostonNOW. This is a list of different ways the MBTA could try to increase ridership by launching a campaign that shows the benefits of using public transportation, especially since the cost of gas continues to rise.

I also saw an article in today's The Boston Globe regarding some changes underway at the Mass Pike. Hey - if the Pike can overall their structure, why can't the T?


Keith said...

Sure, the trains were all on time yesterday - the first day of the new schedule - and again today (so far!)

How embarrassing would it be for the MBTA/MBCR braintrust if any trains were late? I'm sure there was a lot of pressure to make sure the schedule was kept.

Of course it's school vacation week, meaning less riders and more parking spaces at those lots that usually fill up early.

Before I jump up and down with glee at the MBTA/MBCR being able to stick to a schedule, let's see what happens when it's not a school vacation week.

Some may call me cynical, I tend to think of myself as a realist.

Train Rider said...


Hi. I absolutely agree with your assessment. The MBTA/MBCR was definitely "on show" yesterday. Beyond any weather issues that popped up, I'm sure both entities were working harder than normal to ensure that the trains rain on schedule. Maybe they're all "high-fiving" each other since the trains actually ran a bit ahead of schedule (at least the trains that I was on).

Great point about this week being a school vacation way for most Massachusetts school children. I totally forgot about that and I'm sure that is contributing to a lower-than-normal ridership.

I'm a realist too, which means people may think that I'm being cynical or snarky. Hence the reason why I commented that the trains will probably run well for a few months and then a fare hike will be put into place.

I'm just tired of being a pawn in the Worcester-Framingahm commuter line game.

Thanks for visiting!
Train Rider