The MTA has launched its new website which contains some new features and a less cluttered format. Of particular interest is Metro-North’s real time train info which can be accessed from a smart phone or computer. By using Metro-North Train Time, you can check train departure times, along with destination, track assignment and real-time status for the next 12 trains at your station. Just select a station from the user-friendly drop-down menu below and click. Unfortunately, not all stations are covered, but Metro-North indicates that more will be added in the future.
Also on the Home Page is the announcement of the new LIRR text-based access to train schedules which will be provided to Long Island Rail Road customers through a pilot program with the Long Island-based firm CooCoo. Now, LIRR customers who do not have a web-enabled cell phone can just send a text to get real time train schedules, service delays and other details, all for free.
Other features include a menu to easily get service status notices for subway, bus, rail and bridges and tunnels. There is a new “Plan and Ride” source for directions using Google , but NYC Transit’s “Trip Planner” and New York State DOT’s “511NY” are also shown as options for trip information. Unfortunately, Google’s information does not cover ADA trips and a quick test of its capability in Mid-town Manhattan revealed a complete disregard for the 42nd Street Shuttle; Trip Planner, while including ADA trips, only covers NYCT subways and buses; and 511NY has been shown to provide inefficient recommendations for traveling in the Tri-state area (see PCAC’s most recent report, Going the Distance).
Riders are urged to negotiate through the new website, try out the new features and make comments through the “tell us what you think” portal (shown at left) on the Home Page.