Southern Brooklyn

MTA "Improving Non-Stop"? Not According To The News


THE COMMUTE: In an effort to improve its image and obtain more funding from Albany, last month the MTA rebranded its non-service-change public information advertisement cards.  Previously named “Sub-Talk” and “Bus Talk,” the MTA now uses the tag line “Improving Non-Stop” to tout new projects such as Select Bus Service and Countdown Clocks.

But will riders believe that the MTA really is improving?

It’s questionable, since  the MTA has recently been hit with a slew of negative news stories.

  • On Friday, the City Council grilled MTA executives for more than four hours regarding the recent blizzard.
    • Admitting mistakes were made, NYC Transit President Tom Prendergast stated there was no excuse for stranding passengers for seven hours aboard an A Train near Aqueduct. The MTA also stated they should have made a formal emergency declaration sooner, set up a central control room to monitor the situation, and curtailed or suspended service sooner to prevent stranded trains and 650 buses from getting stuck and hindering street cleaning efforts.  They also admitted not paying close enough attention to rescuing stranded passengers.
    • The City Council has also called for a public hearing for Brooklyn on Wednesday, January 19 at 6 p.m. in Brooklyn Borough Hall (209 Joralemon Street).
  • Another disturbing story involved the seizing of evidence in an investigation into the falsified signal inspections, according to the New York Daily News.
  • Subway tracks have been plagued with rats for many years, but this week a YouTube video went viral showing a rat climbing up the leg and onto the face  of a sleeping commuter while inside a subway car.
  • Finally, a New York Post  investigation revealed that more than 10 years after the MTA promised to transform its subway data network with fiber optics, security cameras and more, the Synchronized Optical Network (SONET) is more than $200 million over budget with only Phase 1 completed and accepted.

Think these items will be touted as the MTA “Improving Non-Stop”? Yeah, we doubt it, too.

The Commute is a weekly feature highlighting news and information about the city’s mass transit system. It is written by Allan Rosen, a Manhattan Beach resident and former Director of MTA/NYC Transit Bus Planning (1981).

Comment policy


  1. The MTA is so BS. They don’t even have to show their books to the public, So we don’t even have a handle on how much money they’re in debt or in reality as I believe Jay Walder is doing right now, swimming in money in an olympic size pool (heated of course). The prices will continue to rise, it’ll be 2.50 before to long then 2.75 and then 3.00 and all for the same shitty service. The only good service is on the 4,5,6 lines for about 6 or 7 stops in Manhattan. Every other line, well lets just say I’m lucky the Manhattan Bridge hasn’t fallen down yet (although that would lie with the city as well)…

    On the rat video, I’d have to say that was all planned out. First off that rat looked too healthy and clean not a Subway rat. And the ‘homeless guy’ everyone says it runs up on, he reacts way to well to a FUCKING RAT RUNNING UP YOUR BODY WHILE YOU’RE SLEEPING… no real subway rat would ever do such a thing, its definitely a trained rat. Plus did you see all the passengers on the car acting perfectly still not alarmed by A FUCKING RAT RUNNING AROUND ON A TRAIN

  2. You are really skeptical. The MTA is more open today than they have ever been. There is a world of information available on their website, though some of it is not readily accessible. You sort of have to know what’s available and how to look for it. But they still operate in too much secrecy.

    The Manhattan Bridge is no longer in danger of falling down. There has been much repair work over the past 30 years.

    As far as the rat, I believe it is authentic. The guy could have been half asleep and not fully realizing what was happening. The story was carried by a bunch of TV stations. It even made Inside Edition. Someone even interviewed the guy who made the video and he seemed genuine.

  3. Simple request so I decided to call 311 to find out. Isn’t that the number Mayor Bloomberg says we should call? They had no information on the hearing. So I asked for a number for the NYC Council or the BP’s office. They didn’t have those numbers either. They could only help me if I gave them the name of the person who set up the hearing. Unbelievable. So I asked for the number of Councilman Nelson which they gave me.

    You get a recording asking you to punch in the number of the staff member you want to speak to. Of course, Nelson’s name is not listed. Any number you press, you get a message that the person is on another line and leave your name and number. This is alos what happens when you try to get into his office. I left my phone number and am waiting for a return call.

  4. Forgot to mention that the Manhattan Beach Community Group in conjunction with other groups is also holding a hearing on the same night at 8PM at PS 195. Thought this would have been posted.

  5. Nelson’s office just called me back. The meeting is still scheduled to be held at Borough Hall. You can call Borough Hall tomorrow at 718-802-3800 to learn of any last minute cancellations.

  6. watch the video one more time… the fact that everyone is perfectly calm about the situation of a rat running around on a train… not even one person is shocked or even have a face of fright. TV stations carrying it doesn’t mean its real or not. Remember just because something is on the Internet doesn’t mean its true

  7. Some improvement – I wanted 45 minutes last night for n N train that never showed finally took a 2 other trains to get home – it only took 2 hours total – ha ha


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