Sick of Failing Subways? Tell the Riders Alliance All About Your Nightmare Commutes

The worst horror stories will be shared with state legislators, many of whom haven't taken a subway or bus in years.

Gov. Cuomo's plan to not shut down the L train was "wild," a board member said. Photo: Lorraine Cink/Twitter
Gov. Cuomo's plan to not shut down the L train was "wild," a board member said. Photo: Lorraine Cink/Twitter

Maybe you were stuck in between stations one stop from home for 25 minutes at the end of a long day. Maybe you had to make multiple unplanned transfers to get to your job on the weekend. Or maybe you waited an hour for a bus that never came.

We’ve all been there. Unless you’re a state legislator with a parking placard, in which case, who knows how long it’s been since you’ve experienced a hellish transit trip.

But for most New Yorkers, the nightmare commute is getting to be more and more common as subway and bus service reaches appalling new lows. The Riders Alliance wants your help to turn things around.

You can share your stories and photos of transit trips gone wrong on social media using the hashtag #WorstCommute, or submit them at the Riders Alliance website, and the Riders Alliance will make sure Governor Cuomo and your representatives in Albany see how bad things have gotten.

Only in the last year has Cuomo acknowledged that core transit service is falling to pieces. It took a series of epic, systemwide failures — and a concerted campaign by advocates — to get the governor to pay attention to the collapse of the transit system happening on his watch.

Even now, Cuomo has provided no guarantees that he’ll push for congestion pricing this legislative session, and he appears to be as complacent as ever about the MTA’s difficulties implementing capital upgrades.

Nor have many legislators come to terms with the urgent need to improve subways and buses. Your state representatives don’t ride transit much. They’re shuttling back and forth between New York and Albany, and when they’re back home, they have free parking privileges to spare them the trouble of riding transit.

So while your miserable commute may make the collapse of the country’s largest transit system painfully obvious to you, odds are it’s not registering on a personal level with many Albany representatives. We need a conduit to viscerally convey the daily misery of the subways and buses to our elected officials.

Enter the Riders Alliance. Until Cuomo and the legislature pass “a plan to fund and fix the transit system,” they’ll be collecting transit horror stories. Submissions are due by midnight on Friday, and each week the person who submits the story judged to be the worst commute will win a chocolate MetroCard.

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