Home Rider Report Cards Catching up on the MTA’s (bad) grades

Catching up on the MTA’s (bad) grades

by Benjamin Kabak

nwbullets.jpg As loyal readers of Second Ave. Sagas may have noticed, I’ve fallen down on the job a bit with the results of the Rider Report Cards. With only six subway lines and the Staten Island Railroad left, I haven’t posted the results in a while.

Honestly, I grew tired of the report cards. Basically, you know the drill: Riders don’t like the crowds, the wait or the announcements. Some lines are seemingly less safe than others, and the subways should be cleaner. These complaints are nothing new, and it’s little wonder than that the City Council criticized the MTA for running the report card project as a publicity stunt. Did they really have to spend a reported $15,000 per subway line just to find this out?

But now we return to the Rider Report Cards. I want to have all of the results up before posting my annotated report card later this week. So stay tuned for that.

Meanwhile, let’s turn our attention to the N and W lines. The N — the Broadway Express — runs from Coney Island to Astoria via the Sea Beach line, the Fourth Avenue line, the Manhattan Bridge, the Broadway line and the Astoria line. The W — the part-time Broadway local — runs from Whitehall St. up the Broadway and Astoria lines to Ditmas Boulevard. The W runs from 6:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. during the week, and during the weekends, the N takes the Montague Street tunnel instead of the Manhattan Bridge.

You know the drill with these lines: They’re not the most reliable; they’re a bit sluggish; and they can get fairly crowded. The report cards reflect this reality. The N received a C-minus, and the W pulled down a D-plus. That’s hardly a vote of confidence for the only trains servicing Astoria and large parts of South Brooklyn.

For the report cards, 6,384 riders graded the N, and 1174 riders graded the W. The top ten complaints are what you would expect:

  1. Reasonable wait times for trains
  2. Minimal delays during trips
  3. Adequate room on board at rush hour
  4. Cleanliness of stations
  5. Station announcements that are easy to hear
  6. Train announcements that are easy to hear
  7. Sense of security in stations
  8. Station announcements that are informative
  9. Sense of security on trains
  10. Cleanliness of subway cars

  1. Reasonable wait times for trains
  2. Minimal delays during trips
  3. Adequate room on board at rush hour
  4. Train announcements that are easy to hear
  5. Station announcements that are easy to hear
  6. Cleanliness of subway cars
  7. Station announcements that are informative
  8. Cleanliness of stations
  9. Sense of security in stations
  10. Sense of security on trains

After the jump, full grades.

Rider Ratings of N Service 2007 Grade
Minimal delays during trips D+
Reasonable wait times for trains D+
Adequate room on board at rush hour D
Sense of security in stations C
Sense of security on trains C
Working elevators and escalators in stations C-
Signs in stations that help riders find their way C+
Signs in subway cars that help riders find their way C+
Cleanliness of stations D+
Cleanliness of subway cars C
Station announcements that are easy to hear D+
Station announcements that are informative D+
Train announcements that are easy to hear C-
Train announcements that are informative C-
Lack of graffiti in stations C
Lack of graffiti in subway cars C+
Lack of scratchitti in subway cars C-
Courtesy and helpfulness of station personnel C-
Comfortable temperature in subway cars C
Ease of use of subway turnstiles C+
Availability of MetroCard Vending Machines B-
Overall performance C-

Rider Ratings of W Service 2007 Grade
Minimal delays during trips D+
Reasonable wait times for trains D+
Adequate room on board at rush hour D+
Sense of security in stations C+
Sense of security on trains C
Working elevators and escalators in stations C-
Signs in stations that help riders find their way C
Signs in subway cars that help riders find their way C
Cleanliness of stations C-
Cleanliness of subway cars C-
Station announcements that are easy to hear D
Station announcements that are informative D+
Train announcements that are easy to hear D+
Train announcements that are informative D+
Lack of graffiti in stations C
Lack of graffiti in subway cars C
Lack of scratchitti in subway cars C-
Courtesy and helpfulness of station personnel C-
Comfortable temperature in subway cars C
Ease of use of subway turnstiles C+
Availability of MetroCard Vending Machines B-
Overall performance D+

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2 comments

epc January 14, 2008 - 3:06 pm

I can think of two reasons to do the cards:
– they can document public input and dissatisfaction so that when they go to Albany or Washington asking for funds they have something to back them up
– the MTA has a given, insider’s perspective of how they’re providing the services, however well or poorly they think they’re doing they can calibrate it against the public perception

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Second Ave. Sagas | Blogging the NYC Subways » Blog Archive » Citizens Advisory Committee critique rehashes familiar territory January 17, 2008 - 1:09 am

[…] PCAC wasn’t too thrilled with the Rider Report Cards. I concur. A flawed process and methodology as well as predictable results marred the process. Relatedly, the […]

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