Tuesday, October 28, 2008


As you may have heard, parking is about to change at commuter rail lots. It's going up from $2 per day to $4 per day. But nobody seems to have told the people who write the schedules. The new October 27th, 2008 pocket schedule for the Franklin line still lists the parking cost as "easy and inexpensive...at only $2 per day".

It should be no surprise that there has been a lot of talk among passengers about the increase. Everyone I've spoken to is pretty pissed off. A 100% increase? That's steep, even in this economy!

It's also going to be pretty inconvenient. Ever tried to push four individually-folded dollar bills through one of those little payment slots? It can be done, of course, but it takes time. And just try doing it when the train is about to leave!

Of course you may prefer to pay with 16 quarters instead...

Another odd thing: the penalty fee. It used to be $0.75, but from what I've heard, it's only going up to a dollar. Why are those who follow the rules going to be stuck with a 100% increase, while those who skip paying only have a 25% increase? Is the T trying to reward people for not paying?

1 comment:

Kevin Carroll said...

A heavy protest

When the Westborough T station opened eight years ago I paid $1 a day to park — an incentive to get cars off the turnpike and people onto the trains. Now, Worcester line T commuters will soon be hit with second round of a 100 percent parking fee increase, bringing the fee to $4 a day.

So as a protest, I urge all riders to use dollar coins at all parking locations. They fit in the parking slot on all T parking lots on the Worcester line and a roll of $25 is available at all area major banks. All those dollar coins showing up will have a greater impact than 100 angry letters.

If everyone parking at Westborough’s 650 spaces used four dollar coins it would equal 2,600 coins a day. At one ounce they’d weigh 162.5 pounds a day. Other stations along the route would weigh in that range, too. Someone would have to do a lot of heavy lifting!

You are encouraged to use mass transit to stop global warming, but doing the right thing gets you punished with an ever rising fee, now $4, and no receipt to prove you have paid.

But this is Massachusetts, and no good deed ever goes unpunished.

OK, commuters, get those dollar coins. And as an added benefit: no folding necessary.

Kevin Carroll