Green Line single operators? POP?

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

Moderators: CRail, sery2831

Green Line single operators? POP?

Postby ckb » Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:08 pm

http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2005/01/21/t_plans_green_line_cost_cuts/

Appears that the T is looking to run 2 and 3 car Green Line trains with a single, lead operator. MBTA says it won't pose problems and is cheaper. Unions say that it isn't safe: the equipment is unreliable, harder to see people or problems, and security is an issue. The article also mentions something about fare checking going along with the upcoming automated fare collection, but doesn't go into adequate detail (for me, at least) to explain how fares would be collected on above-ground portions of the line.
ckb
 

Postby Ron Newman » Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:17 pm

I'm on the T's side on this one. It will make boarding faster and therefore reduce dwell time at stops.
Ron Newman
 
Posts: 2772
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2004 7:04 pm
Location: Davis Square, Somerville, MA

Postby BC Eagle » Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:44 pm

I agree. I think the T is making a move in the right direction with this initiative.
BC Eagle
 

Postby octr202 » Fri Jan 21, 2005 3:25 pm

I guess its not surprising...the budget is going to force moves like this. The labor force on the T's rapid transit lines is huge, especially in comparison to other cities.

In the same category, are there any other subway systems outside of NYC and Philadelphia that operate with two-person crews. I know Chicago bit the bullet and converted to all one-person operation, on up to eight car trains, although their cars are similiar in size to our Blue Line cars.
Wondering if I'll see the Haverhill double-tracking finished before I retire...
Photo: Melbourne W7 No. 1019 on Route 78, Bridge & Church Streets, Richmond, Victoria. 10/21/2010
User avatar
octr202
 
Posts: 4142
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 8:13 am
Location: In the land of the once and future 73 trackless trolley.

Postby apodino » Fri Jan 21, 2005 4:07 pm

I am anxious to see where this goes. The T did this on the blue line, by fightin g the unions and winning. The interesting thing about this proposal is that it would happen not by laying anyone off, but by early retirements and the like, so no jobs would actually be cut. The only benefit to the Union would be more hiring, but I don't really see that being a problem in the future.

Just a question on a related topic. How would you guys feel about removing the guards from the Red and Orange lines, so that all trains would be one person crews, as is done in Chicago and Washington? It seems to me that its worked fine on the blue line and there haven't been any safety issues here.
Rich "Dino" Martin
A one time happy rider of Arborway and the old Washington St. El.
apodino
 
Posts: 187
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2004 10:32 pm
Location: Appleton, WI

Postby RailBus63 » Fri Jan 21, 2005 4:26 pm

I'm very skeptical about this. First of all, how will this work for cash riders - will there be ticket machines at all platforms? Or will the unmanned cars be for 'Charlie Card' riders only?

Second, I don't believe Boston is ready for proof-of-payment. It's one thing to open a brand-new light rail system and tell the riders 'This is how it works' - it's something else entirely to change a fare system that has been in place for decades. I think the fare evasion that will result will be off the charts - the T will put on a big show at first, but over time there will not be nearly enough cops out there to catch all the fare beaters. For that matter, how will those officers know if a card has value on it or not - will they be carrying a device to check everybody's card? I just don't see how this will work.

Jim
User avatar
RailBus63
 
Posts: 1872
Joined: Tue May 04, 2004 1:48 pm

Postby Mdlbigcat » Fri Jan 21, 2005 4:39 pm

octr202 wrote:
In the same category, are there any other subway systems outside of NYC and Philadelphia that operate with two-person crews. I know Chicago bit the bullet and converted to all one-person operation, on up to eight car trains, although their cars are similiar in size to our Blue Line cars.


At SEPTA the subways are all one-man. The MFSE was converted in 1999, when the M4's took over from the Almond Joys [Budd], and the Broad St line went one-man earlier in the 90's.
69th St. Train Making All stops.......Doors are Closing!
Mdlbigcat
 
Posts: 281
Joined: Sat Sep 11, 2004 8:08 pm
Location: Oaklyn, NJ

Postby CSX Conductor » Fri Jan 21, 2005 9:17 pm

Ron Newman wrote:I'm on the T's side on this one. It will make boarding faster and therefore reduce dwell time at stops.


BC Eagle Posted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:44 pm Post subject:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I agree. I think the T is making a move in the right direction with this initiative.


Apparently you gentleman do not have to worry about automated machinery replacing you. I have always expected that the MBTA's #1 goal with the automated fare collection system would be to eleiminate jobs and lay people off. :(
User avatar
CSX Conductor
 
Posts: 5458
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 12:04 am
Location: Boston, Mass

Postby efin98 » Fri Jan 21, 2005 9:26 pm

People here are getting what they want, now how long before they start complaining that things are worse than they were before?

No matter what happens, something will occur to make people angry and outraged at what the T is doing- it's a no win situation, no matter what is done someone is going to get screwed.
efin98
 

Postby 7 Train » Fri Jan 21, 2005 9:48 pm

NYCT has 1-man operation (OPTO) on all shuttles and on selected night/weekend routes using R44/46/62/68 cars.
7 Train
 

Postby BC Eagle » Fri Jan 21, 2005 10:21 pm

CSX Conductor wrote:Apparently you gentleman do not have to worry about automated machinery replacing you. I have always expected that the MBTA's #1 goal with the automated fare collection system would be to eleiminate jobs and lay people off. :(


To quote the article: "Pesaturo said the change would not trigger layoffs and instead be accomplished through attrition."
BC Eagle
 

Postby apodino » Fri Jan 21, 2005 10:35 pm

Ed's right, you aren't going to please everyone no matter what you do. That having been said we have to look for ways to improve the service and stuff. Obviously POP is something I have shot down in the past. However, if you got a charlie card validated, or used it to get a recipt showing fare paid for the surface portion of the green line, you could still use that as a pop method. Now whether this would work in a zone pricing system is another issue, since you may have riders who didn't get a card swiped and validated at a surface station, that may well be charged the maximum on exit fare since the system won't know where he or she boarder.

Implementing it is a challenge, and I don't think the T is quite ready for it yet. However the T is in a budget crunch and something like this could save the T a little money. However, fare evasion could be a problem and its something the T has to look into when figuring out how to implement this. I think if the T wants to make all trains operated by single operators, it would be much easier to remove the guards from the Orange and Red line trains before the second operator from the green line trains for the aforementioned reasons. However, Unions would oppose it, and there would be rider opposition based on what I saw when this was done on the blue line. Would hurt the unions and the workforce, but unfortunately if you continue to lose money, you don't have it for other things like arborway, Blue-Red, Blue line to lynn, green line to medford, etc.
Rich "Dino" Martin
A one time happy rider of Arborway and the old Washington St. El.
apodino
 
Posts: 187
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2004 10:32 pm
Location: Appleton, WI

Postby BC Eagle » Fri Jan 21, 2005 11:27 pm

I imagine this move would also improve service on the Green Line. From what I understand, many 1 car trolleys are due to operators calling out sick, or being late for their shifts. Since this removes the limiting agent, in this case the need for an operator on each vehicle, I would think we'd see more consistent 2 and 3 car trolley service. Granted, this also depends on how long the Boeings can remain in service, and God only knows when any Type 9's will arrive.
BC Eagle
 

Postby trolleyguy » Sat Jan 22, 2005 2:11 am

I fear that substantial and irrevocable changes may be coming to the Green Line. Why? The T has just gotten out from under a very unpleasant and unfortunate experience trying to comply with the Americans With Disabilities Act - namely, the Type 8 fiasco. Mounting financial pressures are giving rise to an even dicier development - the idea that elimination of staff on second and third cars in LRV trains will save the T more precious dollars. You can bet that the Amalgamated Transit Union is going to fight this proposal tooth and nail. This staff-reduction issue, coupled with shrinking budgets, the Type 8 debacle and an aging LRV fleet, is slowly but surely pressing the T's management harder and harder up against the wall.

I can imagine what is going on behind the scenes in the minds of T management these days. Costs are rising, Green Line rolling stock is moving toward the end of its service life - and, if that weren't enough, the handicapped accessibility compliance requirement for the Green Line has STILL not yet been met. The pressure to DO SOMETHING, ANYTHING, about all this is growing.

What I suspect may be sizzling around in the minds of T management right now is this: Why not seize this unfortunate moment and look upon it as a golden opportunity to convert the entire Green Line to bus rapid transit, a la the Silver Line? Rip up the tracks, pave the tunnels, string a second wire alongside the existing one and - voila! - there you have it - Bus Rapid Transit, the latest and greatest technological advancement in public transportation to come down the pike in over one-hundred years!! And the latest thing in bus rapid transit is the Guided Bus - perfect for dealing with tight spots in the Green Line tunnels. The Guided Bus is catching on big-time in Great Britain right now - the City of Cambridge, England, for one, is on the verge of building a Guided Bus rapid transit line along a disused railway.

Silver Line-type service into the subway would certainly solve the one-seat-ride issue on the Arborway Line, and probably put that matter to rest. Furthermore, the T's biggest argument in favor of Bus Rapid Transit these days is that it's flexible and cheaper - much cheaper - than buying new light rail vehicles.

It is no secret either that T Chairman Michael Mulhern is in love with Bus Rapid Transit - he thinks it is the latest and greatest game in town. And he's got the Federal Transit Administration on his side, too.

We should therefore not be too overly surprised should we hear within the next year or so an announcement from the T that it has given up on light rail in favor of Silver Line-type service for the Green Line, with the possible exception of the D - Riverside line, which would probably be reconverted to diesel-powered commuter rail.
trolleyguy
 

Postby BC Eagle » Sat Jan 22, 2005 12:26 pm

Shhhh, someone from the T might read that!

Seriously though, I don't think we have to worry about that. I thought someone on this board mentioned awhile back that the total costs for running a light rail line weren't that much more than running a bus rapid transit line. I think in this case, the conversion costs from light rail to BRT would be enough to discourage any move like this.
BC Eagle
 

Next

Return to Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests