|Embargoed for Release: |
Thursday, March 7, 2013, 5:30 am
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Cate Contino and Jason Chin-Fatt
The survey found that most conditions the group rated got better, including garbage bags on platform, staircases in disrepair, exposed wiring, floor cracks, and lighting. Two conditions continued to perform at nearly 100%: the presence of garbage cans and the lack of overflowing garbage cans.
In all, the Straphangers Campaign released findings on twelve1 subway platform conditions, including the presence of garbage cans, overflowing garbage cans, large garbage bags on platforms, rats, graffiti, lighting, handrails and staircases, exposed wiring, peeling paint, water damage, floor cracks, and missing tiles2,3.
The survey was based on observations of all 251 station platforms at 120 subway stations by 13 interns and staff between May 28th and August 10th, 2012. These 251 platforms were nearly identical to the platforms surveyed in 2011, which were selected randomly. (See Methodology and Appendix for the list of stations.)
This represents 28% of the total of 909 New York City Transit subway station platforms systemwide.
Observations were made weekdays, between morning and evening rush-hour periods. A copy of the survey form along with illustrative photographs and instructions is attached, as is the methodology for randomly choosing subway stations. Surveyors were carefully trained.
We applaud transit managers and workers for improving conditions at many stations, said Jason Chin-Fatt, the Straphanger Campaign field organizer who oversaw the survey. But theres still room for further progress. Theres no reason, for example, that riders should have a one in ten chance of seeing a rat while waiting for a train.
In general, the survey sought to catalogue conditions for which the Campaign felt transit officials could fairly be held accountable and were not overly time or weather-sensitive. For example, we did not rate the presence of litter, or temperatures in stations.
MTA New York City Transit performs its own twice-a-year Passenger Environment Survey (PES) for subway stations. However, it mostly rates different aspects of the station environment and in some cases uses different measures. In addition, NYC Transit rates an entire station; this survey rates station platforms only.
In general, NYC Transits observations cannot be directly compared with the Straphangers Campaign survey findings.
Among different aspects of stations rated by NYC Transit are: litter; subway maps; functioning annunciators; escalators/elevators in operation; working public telephones; and working booth microphones.
Two measures may be roughly comparable: