Countdown Clocks Debut at South Station, May Come to Wellington

Electronic boards tell riders at South Station when the next train will arrive. The program will be rolled out slowly to all branches except the Green Line.

Subway riders will know at a glance when the next train is coming; at South Station, at least.

The MBTA flipped the switch Wednesday morning on experimental signs at South Station which indicate when the next train is expected. If all goes well, the signs would be put into service at Park Street later in August and Downtown Crossing in September. That's according to a Boston Globe report on the pilot program. Eventually, all stations in the system would get the signs.

There's one big caveat though: The Green Line won't have the countdown clocks because of its old tracking system, the Globe reports.

There are smart phone apps that predict when buses and trains will show up, but Boston is behind New York, Chicago, London and Washington, D.C. in having platform signs to alert riders how long a wait to expect.

Read the full story on the countdown clocks at the Boston Globe.

How do you guage your MBTA commute? Do you use the MBTA's aps? Would these signs greatly improve your trip?

cindy August 18, 2012 at 11:49 AM
the orange line is the best line. It's about 6min btwn trains. Red line which is the newest line, cars are cleaner but it's a slow ride for a new line. The green line is a joke, it's one of the oldest lines and it's basically a trolley. Pedestrian traffic,motor vehicle traffic, and those crazy turns inside the tunnel slows this line. It's a two cart trolley. they should invest money into building better tunnels are rail cars if they want to compete with these cities. NY has the best subway system in the USA. Ours is a joke. We already have a announcing system on the orange line that states when the train is approaching. I don't see the need for having a sign that states the train is late, you still have to wait for it.
Danielle DiRusso August 19, 2012 at 02:26 PM
They already have alerts letting you know when the next train is arriving, do we really need countdown clocks. Are people that impatient that they cant just stand and wait for train? I think the money can be spent elsewhere, like cleaning up some of the stations.
Concerned Citizen August 31, 2012 at 01:18 AM
Funny way for a bankrupt- begging -for- money agency to be spending money. http://boston.cbslocal.com/2012/04/04/mbta-board-to-discuss-fare-hikes-service-cuts/


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