• Free Commuter Rail Back Bay to South Station

  • 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

  by danib62
 
MBTA Announces Free Commuter Rail Service From Back Bay To South Station
Start Date: 9/22/2006 End Date: 10/22/2006 E-Mail: [email protected]

PROVIDES AN EASY CONNECTION FROM BACK BAY’S HOTELS & RESTAURANTS TO LOGAN AIRPORT & THE CONVENTION CENTER

Continuing its commitment to provide customers with viable transportation options, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority today kicked off a campaign promoting the convenient, five-minute commute from Back Bay Station to South Station. At no cost, commuters and visitors alike can take advantage of boarding a commuter rail train at Back Bay Station and travel one stop to the Financial District. At South Station, riders may also access Silver Line connections to the South Boston Waterfront, the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center and Logan Airport.

“The T’s priority is to provide customers and visitors to Boston with easy transportation choices,” said MBTA General Manager Daniel A. Grabauskas. “We are encouraging riders from the Back Bay to take advantage of the quickest way to get across town. We are promoting a five-minute ride to some of Boston’s top destinations.”

To promote this public transit option, the MBTA has partnered with Back Bay hotels to provide visitors with information. Starting today, the MBTA will display information on the Orange and Red Lines, and schedules will be available at Back Bay Station. The MBTA provides 85 weekday and 60 weekend departures from Back Bay to South Station.
My Thoughts:

Wasn't this already free by default? I've never seen a conductor ever charge anyone boarding inbound at back bay!

The T also makes no mention of the service being free in the opposite direction. From the way it reads it seems that if you travel from South Station to Back Bay you still have to pay.

Also isn't this not the kind of thing the T would want to do ahead of a fare hike? It sends a very bad messege about their efforts to increase revenue without increasing fares.

  by sery2831
 
It is only a free one way, they want conductors to start picking up tickets right out of South Station at all times. The only issue I see with them trying to get people to ride from Back Bay to South Station is how do you know what track the train is coming in on?

  by CSX Conductor
 
There is a track monitor in the ticket office to show approaching trains so announcements can be made for "the next inbound to South Station". One problem with one-way fares could be someone arguing with the crews outbound that they shouldn't have to pay because they didn't pay inbound. As for crews collecting fares inbound between BBY & BOS, yes it is rare, but many do their best to collect, especially during off-peak.

  by danib62
 
sery2831 wrote:It is only a free one way, they want conductors to start picking up tickets right out of South Station at all times. The only issue I see with them trying to get people to ride from Back Bay to South Station is how do you know what track the train is coming in on?
My experience is that they usually anounce the track of the next inbound train. Perhaps they should have a spot on the monitors that says next inbound train on track ___. My experience is that inbound trains other then those from Worcester almost always come in on track 2.
Last edited by danib62 on Fri Sep 22, 2006 3:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

  by CSX Conductor
 
danib62 wrote:My experience is that inbound trains other then those from Worchester almost always come in on track 2.
Apparently you haven't experienced alot of traffic down there yet, lol. All inbounds coming that stop @ Ruggles have to use either 1 or 3 since there is no platform on track 2 @ Ruggles and the last interlocking before Back Bay is Plains. :wink:

  by danib62
 
CSX Conductor wrote:Apparently you haven't experienced alot of traffic down there yet, lol. All inbounds coming that stop @ Ruggles have to use either 1 or 3 since there is no platform on track 2 @ Ruggles and the last interlocking before Back Bay is Plains. :wink:
I'll take your word on it but almost everytime I come in from Sharon it drops me on track 2 and those trains usually stop at Ruggles. I guess I need to pay better attention.

  by CSX Conductor
 
Attleboro/Stoughton locals usually cross from 2 to either 1 or 3 @ Forest interlocking (which is at the west end of Forest Hills station) when scheduled to stop @ Ruggles.

  by Ron Newman
 
In practice, someone who gets on at South Station and doesn't pay would be kicked off at Back Bay anyway, so effectively it's free in that direction too.

  by WonderlandMan
 
Ron Newman wrote:In practice, someone who gets on at South Station and doesn't pay would be kicked off at Back Bay anyway, so effectively it's free in that direction too.
:P good point

  by Ron Newman
 
There is no such place as "Worchester". Sorry, pet peeve.

  by GP40MC 1116
 
It amazes me people who travel the system alot and even some who didn't just didn't "get it" The other day I was on a Type 8 trolley on the Boston College branch, as we were comming and stoping at the Boston University stops, West, Central East, it seemed alot of people getting on, and students themselves just didn't get it. After the driver kept saying it over the PA. If you Board Outbound on any surface branch (B C D E) the fare is FREE! :-D

  by CSX Conductor
 
GP40, there is a big difference here as you are mentioning rapid transit whereas the discussion was about Commuter Rail Tarriffs.

  by GP40MC 1116
 
CSX Conductor wrote:GP40, there is a big difference here as you are mentioning rapid transit whereas the discussion was about Commuter Rail Tarriffs.
CSX, Woops my bad.. you are correct. It's alot different fare wise, boy how different would it be if you paid 1.25 on the Commuter Rail :-D

  by iandavid
 
Allow me to again ignore the difference in modes for the sake of another point:

The rhetoric they've been using in their argument in favor of charging for outbound trips on the Green Line is that it constitutes a "fare anomaly". Yet here they're creating a new anomaly by telling people they won't be charged inbound (while leaving it up to assumption that they will be charged going outbound). Does this strike anyone else as a bit silly?

  by octr202
 
Smells like the politics of the situation are winning out over transportation reality. The T wants people using the Silver Line to the airport, since that's their baby. Its not easy to get to the Silver Line from the Back Bay area -- in fact, if you're going to take the T to the airport from there, its just as easy, or easier, to go up to the Blue Line (a fact that doesn't look good for the T's pet project). So, the longer that Phase III goes unbuilt, the longer there's going to be a need to create new and novel ways of getting people un the Silver Line.

Just my two cents -- your transfer mileage may vary...