MTA App Contest Winner a Reminder That the Subway Is Pretty Tough on the Disabled

Categories: Subways

Credit: Andrew Glass
An app designed to help people using wheelchairs navigate the subway reminds us of an old problem.
In November last year, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced its App Quest 3.0 contest, challenging developers to make use of the agency's copious data stream to create tools that would help make commuting just a bit easier.

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7 Train Commuters Stranded in Tunnel Under the East River for Over an Hour

Categories: Subways

The Cool Quest via Flickr
Our condolences if you were planning on traveling between Queens and Manhattan this morning. The typically efficient 7 train (rated the best subway line in the whole city by the Straphangers Campaign earlier this year) was suspended for more than three hours.

It's either particularly unfortunate timing, what with Grand Central Station being the 7's first stop in Manhattan and this being one of the busiest travel days of the year...or an excellent excuse (on top of the National Weather Service's ominous travel advisories) to avoid spending time with your family (or someone else's).

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Your Commute Sucked Because You Missed the Harlem Globetrotters on the Subway

Categories: Subways

Credit: Screenshot, Globetrotters video
It was much better than whatever you were doing. (Unless you were reading the Voice, in which case carry on.)
Subway performers have to rank high on the list of perks that come with living in New York City.

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Bratton Cracking Down On Grave Subway Menaces: Acrobats, Sleepers and Churro-Selling Ladies

Photo by Flickr user Ken Stein
A woman brazenly sells churros underground.
It's been two months since new-old New York Police Department Commissioner Bill Bratton was sworn in, and much of the press coverage so far has focused on the NYPD's renewed interest in jaywalkers as part of Vision Zero, the initiative to end traffic deaths. But as the New York Times reports, much of that has focused on walkers, not drivers: jaywalking tickets are up eightfold over the same time last year. That's been sort of a mixed bag from a public relations perspective, with the nadir being 84-year-old Kang Chun Wong, who says he was beaten up by police officers trying to give him a citation.

As it turns out, Bratton's sick of talking about jaywalking and most especially Wong's alleged beating, which he calls "an isolated event." Instead, he'd rather discuss the other big plans he's got to make your city even safer, starting in the subway. Capital New York points us to a delightful interview Bratton did with WPIX yesterday morning where he laid out his plans to tackle the biggest menaces of the underground: sleepers, panhandlers, churro-sellers, and the "It's showtime!" dudes.

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Some People Don't Mind Strangers Falling Asleep on Them in the Subway [VIDEO]

Categories: Subways

Screencap via YouTube
A few weeks ago, a picture of a young man sleeping on a much older one on the subway went kinda sorta viral-ish. A group going by Charidy -- a demonic presence masquerading as a charitable giving start-up -- made a video to show the world that there are in fact plenty of people willing to sacrifice personal space for a random stranger on public transportation. To which we say: Eeeeeeeeeeeeeek.

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MTA Discovers Goddamn Picky Millennial Riders Want Subways That Don't Break Down or Catch Fire

Categories: MTA, Subways

Thumbnail image for r-SUBWAY-PARTY-large570.jpg
Millennials also demand 24-7 party cars
It's begun: the MTA has discovered millennials. They all live in Bushwick and Williamsburg, they can't afford cars, and they want to ride the subway all the dang time, even during what used to be off-peak hours. And why are their (our) expectations so sky-high? Because they (we) didn't live through the same terrifying, 1970s-era subway rides as our forbears, and have only glimpsed them through the hazy, romantic lens of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/ (Important anachronism alert: April appears to be getting her ass kicked by evil ninjas in the City Hall station, which isn't possible, since it was taken out of passenger use in 1945. HOLLYWOOD LIES.)

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Watch Out at the Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer Subway Station

This story is much more frightening due to the fact that it happened in the middle of the afternoon.

Yesterday, around 3:30pm, NYPD authorities believe two Hispanic men stabbed three African-American men at the Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer subway station in Queens. The bloody encounter was a result of an argument between the two parties; two of the African-American males were stabbed in the stomach and another was stabbed in the leg. The suspected perpetrators escaped the station while the three males were rushed to the nearby Jamaica hospital. They are currently in critical but stable condition.

Soon after the attack, trains headed to the J and E line hub were shut down due to the investigation. According to Gothamist, the MTA shut down service to the station around 4:50 p.m. but it looks like it's up and running now. However, no word on the whereabouts of the stabbers at the station.

So, yeah, watch your back.


New Yorker Comes to the Aid of Fellow Subway Rider

Though I've seen my fair share of strange incidents caught on video camera and phone, this one is actually warms my (cold, brittle, feminist) heart a bit.

The video, taken at 9:30 pm on Friday night at the Lorimer Street L station, shows the inside of a subway car just as an altercation breaks out -- a woman accuses a young man, yelling, "he touched me," and another man comes to her aid, dragging the assailant off the train in order to wait for the police.

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Seeing Space Shuttle Enterprise From the Q Train: A Close Encounter of the Manhattan Bridge Kind

C.S. Muncy
Not the view from the Manhattan Bridge, but it still felt pretty damn close

See C.S. Muncy's photos from the Shuttle landing at JFK

Knowing the Space Shuttle Enterprise was going to be arriving today in New York City, I was extremely pissed off to realize I had a doctor's appointment which would preclude me from actively viewing it, and I'd most likely be underground in the subway when it flew over the Hudson, guaranteeing I wouldn't even catch a glimpse of it. I was also glad, but extremely jealous, that Voice contributor C.S. Muncy would get a front row seat at JFK Airport. My self-pity doubled down when I listened to the Brian Lehrer Show's call in segment of similar space geeks from their perches around the city and in New Jersey.

My only hope was that, in my subway travels on the Q train, I might, maybe have the chance to snatch a glimpse in the three minute window in which the train crossed the Manhattan Bridge. This, I knew, was an implausibly long shot. Using extremely scientific reasoning, I estimated that the odds of the 747 ferrying the Enterprise lifting off from Washington, D.C., flying over the Verrazano, passing by the Statue of Liberty, going up the Hudson, and swinging back over the harbor just as my Q train was on the bridge were about 3,720 to 1...the same odds C-3P0 gave the Millenium Falcon of "successfully navigating an asteroid field."

Well, the odds were with Captain Han Solo and also with me, because I had a close encounter with the Enterprise at exactly the right moment.

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Man Caught For Illegally Entering Times Square Station In Possession of Loaded Gun

Entering the subway through an exit gate: illegal. Entering the subway through an exit gate in possession of a controlled substance and a loaded gun: very illegal. That's is how cops arrested Travis Marks of Virginia Friday evening at the Times Square subway station, NY1 reported. Police told Runnin' Scared that police were about to stop him for illegally entering the system. When they approached him, he threw a bag containing white powdery substance, trying to rid himself of it. Only after the man was already arrested did cops search him and find the gun.

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