Commute-a-holic saw our favorite friend, MBTA GM Dan Grabauskas, being interviewed this morning on Fox 25's morning news program. Commute said that Dan provided a better workout, as he was his swarmy self on the interview. For whatever reason, Fox 25 does not provide code so bloggers can post or share video, so here is a link to the video segment with Dan's interview. You may wonder "Why was Danny G. being interviewed by Fox 25 this morning." Well, it is because the T announced a new marketing campaign - aimed at making riders more polite.
Can you believe it? The T, which is basically bankrupt, is spending money to communicate to their passengers that they need to be more polite while using the T. Good grief!! You know, Muni Manners already does this and they probably do it better. So why couldn't they just save the money and link to the Muni Manners blog off of the T's website? I am incredulous that the T is spending money on this campaign. This is utterly absurd.
Here's an idea - maybe if the T ran its services on time and actually had clean trains/buses, people wouldn't be as pent up as they are. I'm not advocating that riders have poor manners, but sometimes tempers flare because commuters are just frustrated.
It is stuff like this that causes people to want to see things like Question 1 go through.
If you don't feel like seeing Danny G. smirk in the video, you can read all about the T's latest marketing campaign in this article from today's Boston Metro.
Moving on. The Boston Globe ran an article today about the proposed Silver Line III project. Funding that project and other transit initiatives is the focus of two separate articles in today's Boston Metro. The Metro articles pick-up on the MASSPIRG report, announced over the weekend. One article is about how "Funding will decide the fate of Mass. transit," while the other focuses on "Shaping the MBTA for the 21st century." We all know that funding for mass transit and other transportation issues in Massachusetts is in dire straits. Here are some data points that the MASSPIRG report noted:
- 93,000,000 - amount of hours wasted in traffic delays in the greater Boston area during 2005.
- $4.3 billion - Massachusetts residents spent $4.3 billion more on gas in 2007 compared to 1998.
- 57% - the increase in vehicle traffic in the Commonwealth from 1980 to 2007.
Finally, Rep. Tom Sannicandro (D - 7th Middlesex District) wrote a guest op-ed piece for today's The MetroWest Daily News. Rep. Sannicandro details the pending purchase of the CSX tracks. His article states that this purchase will "will lower commute times and vastly improve the overall effectiveness of the Commonwealth's commuter rail program. The most dramatic and immediate changes of the plan will be enacted on Oct. 27 when the number of daily trains leaving Worcester will increase from 10 to 13, and the number of daily trains leaving from Boston to Worcester will increase from 10 to 12."
Yes, when we first heard the news that more trains were being added to the Worcester line, we were initially excited about this. But then when we saw the schedule, we noticed that essentially trains just got moved around.
From what I want and from what I've gathered from other commuters on the Worcester line, riders would like to see the following:
- More express trains from Worcester: Frankly, it would be great if trains could run express from Ashland to Boston.
- More express trains from Framingham: Commuters who live in Framingham and points East do not want to have to rely on the regular trains for their commutes into Boston.
- More train options for off-peak commutes: This includes riders who commuter from Boston and points west and more afternoon trains leaving Boston for Worcester-Framingham riders who may need to leave the office early.