Transit in Trouble Where You Live

Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat: We love transit. Love love love.

But that’s why we hate it so much when transit infrastructure and transit riders are neglected. And they are. The nation’s buses and trains and light rail are too often underfunded, dismissed, vandalized and disrespected.

Transit riders deserve better.

We asked you to send in photos of crummy transit conditions from around the country, and once again, you stepped up. Here are some of the indignities you’ve witnessed:

Many thanks to our contributors, including the indefatigible Richard Masoner of Cyclelicious, BicyclesOnly, dirtycrumbs, Streetsblog’s own Ben Fried and Brad Aaron, and Streetfilms’ Clarence Eckerson.

Check out our previous slide shows of bike traffic, space hogs and bikes at work.

For our next show, we’re looking for something a lot happier — kids on bikes. We’ve already received many pictures on this theme, but we want more. Kids on their own bikes, kids in cargo bikes, kids on trailer bikes — show us what you’ve got. Send JPEGs to sarah [at] streetsblog [dot] org, or tag your photos with "streetsblog" and "kidbikes" in Flickr. Get them to me by Tuesday, November 24.

And as always, thank you.

  • The only problem now is, finally when we as a Nation have begun to once again understand the need to fund transit infrastructure, we don’t even have any money in our transportation coffers to even build roads (I know that’s a big generalization but its mostly true).

  • I’d like to take a moment to blame the generations that came before mine. You know the ones that took advantage of tremendous growth and progress in this country and then decided they didn’t want to pay taxes(I’m lookin at you California) and sent everything into the shitter. Nice job guys. Enjoy your retirement.

  • Old Timer

    to Dan Berkman:

    Hey idiot, the generations before yours CREATED that growth and progress that you are talking about. And in a DEMOCRACY the voters have the right to decide their level of taxation either directly as in CA or through their elected reps as in NY.

    Both states are in the shitter not because their taxes were too low, but because the high taxes are driving productive people and businesses out of those states.

  • Another Commuter

    “The nation’s buses and trains and light rail are too often underfunded, dismissed, vandalized and disrespected.”

    Vandalized and disrespected by the ridership. That does say a lot about mass transit in America. It is heavily subsidized by taxpayers and yet some of the people using it treat it like crap. NYC went through this in the 1970s and 80s with the graffiti problem.

    I sometimes use the local buses (the S53) on S.I. for trips into Brooklyn and see this firsthand. Passengers make a mess leaving food and other crap on the floor of the bus or behave like animals. The express buses into Manhattan are are expensive but have a better class of ridership that respects the equipment. Same for the subways, some passengers just don’t care.

  • So you’re saying that you created tons of wealth and instead of allowing some of that to be plowed back into creating a brighter future for your grandchildren you decided that it was your right and privilege as a proud member of a democratic society to go out and lower taxes so that future generations could be denied good public schools, cheap state colleges, and decent infrastructure. Nice work. Now we can’t even build new subway lines or high speed rail lines because the government doesn’t have the tax revenue and the business leaders of America went out and decided to gamble their hard earned cash on a housing/commodity bubble. Seems like everything worked out nicely.

  • Mad Park

    Had the petro/military/corporate elite NOT chosen to wage their various wars about the globe over the last 50 years, we might have had more money for health, education, transport and so much more. And one more reminder, we are a republic, not a democracy.

    As to the slide show, the F-Market route in SF is a tourist attraction as much as it is part of MUNI’s transport system. There are trains under Market street every few minutes as an alternative, though MUNI is facing some service cuts in December.

  • Awesome, but don’t stop there! I set up a flickr group called: “MTA Malfeasance” for just these sorts of photos!

  • Even Older Timer

    I totally agree that this country has underinvested in everything. The taxes haven’t really been lowered for anyone in the middle class or below, once you count all the fees and extra charges. They have been lowered for the richest amongst us, who have done a great job of framing tax cuts for the rich as anti-government-waste.

    California is a prime example of how to change from having the best schools, roads, police, and universities in the world to being (gated) enclaves of privilege amidst a populace sliding from middle to lower class. All while persuading the middle class that those poor people below them are the cause of all ills.

    Berkman, you are right, but it’s not age, it’s ideology.



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