• The T and Large Events

  • Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.
Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.

Moderators: CRail, sery2831

  • 131 posts
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 9
  by Red Wing
 
With those crowds the overtime I would assume would have been covered by the fare. I bet it's more that Keolis or MBCR before them have no incentive to add trains or think outside of the box. Though not having enough equipment and short trains for everyday usage also adds to the problem. On the next contract if its farmed out (I hope not), there should be a clause for these high ridership events.
  by dm1120
 
Red Wing wrote:With those crowds the overtime I would assume would have been covered by the fare. I bet it's more that Keolis or MBCR before them have no incentive to add trains or think outside of the box. Though not having enough equipment and short trains for everyday usage also adds to the problem. On the next contract if its farmed out (I hope not), there should be a clause for these high ridership events.
It is widely reported that very little fare collection took place on Tuesday. I think your assessment is correct; Keolis gets paid the same no matter what so they have no incentive to do anything extra.
  by Red Wing
 
Well after reading that article, it appears that they did all they could to add to service.
  by Trinnau
 
There is very little room in the rush hour on either side to add service. Most of the equipment is in use throughout, and the Northeast Corridor doesn't really have any excess slots departing south station with 5 different services departing down that line. Also, most of the sets are coming out of their servicing cycle timed to meet their scheduled departures. And the once a train has left, it takes a long time to get all the way back. It is also near impossible to run extra "short" trains out halfway and bring them back due to the huge mixed-destination crowds.

The morning works a little better, because with the parade starting at 11 some of the early trains that normally go in for service as rush hour winds down could be turned back around empty out of Boston to bring in more fans. And they can turn short behind scheduled trains that are filling after a few stops to pick up the slack - meaning they don't need to cover an entire line. For example a Worcester train that fills by Framingham but still is scheduled to make all the Newton and Wellesley stops can be backfilled by an extra out of Boston turning at Framingham behind it.

In talking to a few folks I know, the unofficial number of extra trains is 26 that carried passengers (plus the corresponding 26 non-revenue trains to re-position equipment) and they were 7 coaches over the required number for service, so some sets were bigger than normal. Most of the extras ran at the tail-end of the morning rush hour (8-10am) and just prior to the evening rush after the parade ended (2-4pm)
  by Rbts Stn
 
*sigh*

There was a big event in town this past Saturday, the March for Science (more of a rally, in actuality). As this is important to my wife and me we decided to head down there to support the efforts. Hopped the D Line in Brookline (PACKED SOLID - had to get on at the rear, no chance to pay) and found out en route that they were bustituting from Fenway to Kenmore (and from St. Mary's to Kenmore on the C Line). Everybody off the train, up all those stairs (no idea what they did for disabled passengers) and onto waiting buses for a ride to Kenmore. Down the stairs (elevator option) to the station where an attendant was asking everyone if they were coming from the shuttle (and pointing us to an open gate) and directing the others to the fare gates. "3 minutes" until next train and the loading area was already packed before we got there. Knowing Kenmore station a bit we headed to the very front end of the station and were 2 of the very few who actually got on the train. "15 minutes" until the next train was going to be heading inbound.

We got to Boylston without issue, although we passed thru Hynes and Copley leaving everyone waiting for another train to take them to their destinations.

What should have been at worst 30 minutes (waiting for a train plus the ride to Boylston) took 75 minutes for us. I can easily see it being 120 minutes for those not knowing where exactly to stand.

We walked back to Kenmore after the rally and got home without much issue, although again, it helped to know where the trains usually stop at Fenway station as some folks couldn't get on because there were more of us waiting than there was room for on the empty train. The buses were totally not a problem, other than it taking a very long time to go down Brookline Avenue due to the Kenmore Square traffic light.

We did see bustitute signs on the ride home as we had time to look for them, not that we or anyone else could have gotten into town any better way for the rally.

How do we inform the T of upcoming major events in the city so maybe they are better prepared for crowds?
  by CRail
 
My expectation is that the switch replacement project (reason for the diversion) was planned well before the rally was. It was a rather unfortunate coincidence, for sure.
  by Disney Guy
 
A question would be, why was Kenmore permitted to become so crowded? Namely why wasn't more service in general run from Blandford St. (Comm. Ave. portal) to Government Center with no holding of cars at Kenmore for schedule adjustments?

I have had to take substiture buses from time to time for parts of the Riverside Line and in each and every case I thought that more consists could have been added to both sides of the "bus bridge" to reduce the overall trip time let alone not leave people behind at one or more stations.
  by djlong
 
Ouch.. We came in from New Hampshire - parked at Alewife and took the Red Line in (and out) with no problems.
  by Rbts Stn
 
CRail wrote:My expectation is that the switch replacement project (reason for the diversion) was planned well before the rally was. It was a rather unfortunate coincidence, for sure.
I'm certain you are correct. That shouldn't stop them from doing what Disney Guy suggested, or maybe having some of the SO many shuttle buses just take folks right from St. Mary's or Fenway right to Boston Common (ok, Arlington or Boylston), as at least 75% of the crowds were going to there.
  by Disney Guy
 
One problem with running some shuttle buses from Fenway & St. Mary's all the way to Boston Common is fare collection. There would need to be an open fare gate at Park St. for shuttle riders continuing a subway ride.

In the instance of reconstructing the Beacon Junction the fare collection complexities were limited to Kenmore Station. (Typically during bustitution no one collects fares at Fenway like they do after Sox games.)

When a transit system settles into a weekly schedule, it can become a somewhat sustaining customer serving entity with orderly fare collection. When we add large events and create the need for a citywide ad-hoc take-all-comers transportation system we need to change the role of the system from a somewhat sustaining entity to a public service. As a public service it can expect to have added infusions of tax money to make up for making fare collection secondary to optimizing the other aspects of service.

I read an article where someone said that Uber was adding greatly to traffic congestion. Much of that congestion happens due to fare collection, where the vehicle sits for awhile to accomplish this. How many times have you ridden a streetcar and waited while someone needed help from the motorman to pay his fare? Incidently fare collection slows down all modes of transportation -- commuter rail, buses, streetcar/light rail, traffic signal pre-emption, regular taxis, and Ubers.

Getting back to the commuter rail, it has been proven in Boston that finding a suitable time and place to collect fares (geographical place on the landscape describable in metes and bounds accurate to 10 feet or describable using latitude and longitude accurate to 4 decimal places) is hard enough with normal rush hour rider loads let alone with event crowds descending on the station. Witness the suspension of fare collection on the evenings of Dec. 31 and July 4.
  by rethcir
 
Disney Guy wrote:I read an article where someone said that Uber was adding greatly to traffic congestion. Much of that congestion happens due to fare collection, where the vehicle sits for awhile to accomplish this. How many times have you ridden a streetcar and waited while someone needed help from the motorman to pay his fare? Incidently fare collection slows down all modes of transportation -- commuter rail, buses, streetcar/light rail, traffic signal pre-emption, regular taxis, and Ubers.
I'm not sure i understand what you mean by this. Uber and Lyft's payments are handled instantly via the app. Cash does not change hands unless the rider decides to leave a tip, which is not necessarily expected (the Lyft app allows tipping after the fact, and Uber allegedly builds the tip pricing into the fare).
  by RenegadeMonster
 
Not sure if everyone saw or not, but there will be expanded service June 17-21 for Sail Boston / The Tall ships. This includes the Commuter Rail as well where they run at rush hour capacity all day long June 17-21 and add additional trains during the morning and evening commutes.
  by MBTA F40PH-2C 1050
 
RenegadeMonster wrote:Not sure if everyone saw or not, but there will be expanded service June 17-21 for Sail Boston / The Tall ships. This includes the Commuter Rail as well where they run at rush hour capacity all day long June 17-21 and add additional trains during the morning and evening commutes.
The plan is to only add 1..... ONE..... one...... train out of each facility at rush hour

The weekend (June 17-18) is a different story....going to be an embarrassing event from what I heard today; No extra trains following weekend inbounds, No Needham Service on Sunday, nor anything earlier on the PVD line that Sunday beside what is scheduled. Crowds are expected to be Championship like....and even that service is handled poorly. Where did you read of extra service?
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 9