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Marc Ebuña

321 days ago
Unfiled. Edited by Marc Ebuña 321 days ago
Jack B This schedule lists all the sessions that we have outlined for a great day of un-conferencing. See the below steps for an explanation of how we will be using hackpad throughout the day:
Jack B
  1. Select the sessions that you would like to participate in and note the correlating room number.
  1. Find the room.
  1. Participate in the session.
  1. Click on the link to the session that you are participating in and leave notes, links, pictures, and anything else in the hackpad - think of this as an opportunity to track the day's excitement! 
Marc E Stata Center
Jack B
  • 8:00-9:00am: Breakfast and Registration
  • 9:00-10:30am: Welcome, KeynoteNote Speaker, 3 Word Intros (32-123)
  • 10:45-11:45am: Session 1
  • 11:45am-12:00pm: Break
  • 12:00-1:00pm: Session 2
  • 1:00-2:00pm: Lunch
  • 2:15-3:15pm: Session 3
  • 3:15-3:30pm: Break
  • 3:30-4:30pm: Session 4
617 days ago
Marc E Session Leaders
Mark (
  • Dominick Tribone | MBTA
Patrick G New Mockup based on the newly released performance APIs will be demoed.
Marc E MBTA-Realtime (API and GTFS-r) 
MBTA-Performance API
Patrick G
  • Realtime performance metrics (currently only for subway)
  • Access to Historical data
  • How trains are performing
Marc E
  • open source platform built off GTFS and  GTFS-realtime
  • provides access to data about how trains are performing in addition to when
Carol S
  • 3  calls give you data
  • travel times (how long does it take to get from A  to B?)
  • Dwell times (how long are trains spending in stations?)
  • Headways (how long between trains at a station?)
  • Benchmarks derived from the GTFS schedule
Marc E
  • Ultimate goal is to provide dispatchers at the OCC with actionable information, schedule planners useful data for rebuilding better schedules
  • Happens to also provide riders with helpful measurements
  • Provides transparency about performance
Patrick G System is based on publicly available Schedule data
Marc E All realtime data is public - public feed is what's used to synthesize performance metrics
Arrival and departure events are logged, processing happens twice:
  • at start of day
  • realtime (from data being polled every 15 seconds)
Patrick G
  • Current Processing takes about a minute would like to get it down to 30 second latency
Passenger data input is half hourly from every station. Jay Gordon and Emily??
  • just an estimate currently not actual counts that add up to released numbers.
  • Used for weighting metrics relative to each other not for actual counts.
Marc E API Calls
  • Travel Times
  • How long does it take to go from A to B
Patrick G
  • needs origin and destination 
Marc E
  • Data about what vehicle did - updated every 15 seconds
  • Dwell Times
Patrick G
  • needs a stop and date & time range
  • optionally provide a specific route built this way so you can handle bus in the future.
  • {
  •     "dwell_times": [
  •         {
  •             "route_id": "Red",
  •             "direction": "1",
  •             "arr_dt": "1459292528",
  •             "dep_dt": "1459292603",
  •             "dwell_time_sec": "75"
  •         }
  •     ]
  • }
Marc E
  • How long are trains spending in stations?
  • Headways
  • How long between trains at a given station?
  • Daily Performance
  • What % of customers experienced good wait times?
  • What % of customers experienced good travel times?
  • Currently only available for lines as a whole - by date, by time
Paul S metric_result_trip - % of trains less than their scheduled headway - unweighted by passenger volume
Marc E
  • Current Performance
  • What % of customers are experiencing good wait times?
  • What % of customers are experiencing good travel times?
  • Useful for measuring/improving dispatcher performance
Patrick G Threshold Explanations
Threshold_id_06 may change from 10 minutes to something else.
Marc E Sample Performance Details
  • Synthesis of historical data NOT realtime
Performance Heat Map/Dashboard
Patrick G Showing headways that don't meet benchmarks.
Using stations API and headways API
Carol S Daily  Performance answers 2 questions: what % of customers are experiencing  good wait times? and What % of customers are experiencing good travel  times?
Can create a metric and then specify parameters.
617 days ago
Unfiled. Edited by Marc Ebuña , Patrick Greenwell 617 days ago
Patrick G Nicole Badstuber | Twitter - UCL - London Reconnections - Researching Governance 
Marc E What are the current Challenges and Issues?
  • US Metropolitan Planning Orgs tend to skew focus toward affluent suburban interests and away from low-income urban interests
Patrick G
  • Funding and Governance
  • Regional Tax (OR) vs Statewide Tax for a region (MA)
  • Regional Equity Narrative (East-West MA divide)
  • "Why should we pay for Boston area, it's more expensive there, not my area" when 75% of sales tax lines up with MBTA service area.
Marc E
  • False dichotomy
Patrick G
  • Transit in the Boston Region is managed by the State
Marc E
  • New York City has a similar issue, where MTA is beholden to NYS Gov't by way of capital budget
Patrick G
  • Another example is liquor licenses, state controls how many boston region has.  Rooted in race issues.
  • Lack of ability to cooperate between cities with funding.  
  • Gap in city government and state government
  • Lack of regional governance/ or county.
  • Example: Signals for buses are at local level, but MBTA routes are state.  Nothing the local municipality can do on it's own.
  • Politics hamper the Agency
  • Last Gov. to get hands dirty with T, Dukakis or Weld. All of them were told not to touch it because it'll kill your career.
  • 5 year plan isn't funded
  • Have to ask the state for money.
  • If was regional tax based wouldn't have to ask the state for money.
  • Does Mass. lack the political will for better transit or is it incidental? 
Marc E Best Practices
  • LA
  • Strong local politicians who can campaign for progressive issues
  • ex: Mayor Curtatone of Somerville
Patrick G
  • Can someone put a link to the ENO case study mentioned? Getting to the route of it.
Marc E
  • Shielding the customer from multiple fare systems
  • Operating under one brand - multiple operators continue to run the services on the back end
Patrick G
  • e.g. - Bus, Rail, Bike, Ferry, Subway
  • Salt Lake City is great for Tappable Fare Card systems overall run by Gift Card company
Marc E
  • Addressing basic service issues - reliability, frequency, etc
Patrick G
  • Rebuilding trust through incremental projects that actually succeed. 
Marc E Steps Forward
  • New tools in the funding tool box
  • Regional Payroll Tax
  • Start building trust in the system
  • Improving timetables
  • Branding and marketing
  • Developing coalitions
  • Business community with different groups
Patrick G
  • City Councilors, Mayors, Reps, Community Organizations, etc
  • Some examples that are involved:
  • 128 Buisness Council (on the FCMB)
  • A Better City
  • Greater Boston Business Council
  • Legislation organized through Area Planning Councils/MPO
  • Have power on road projects but not transit projects
  • MPO has the ultimate accountability to the Federal Government
617 days ago
Unfiled. Edited by Marc Ebuña 617 days ago
brought into the political sphere around Transit Oriented Development @ Alewife
Can other neighbourhoods learn from CRTMA serving East Cambridge?
  • EZ Ride is local transit, subsidised by the businesses in East Cambridge
  • Need to find a mechanism to tie the funding source to the area that it's serving
  • Managing to provide as much service as they can afford
  • Running at 85%-90% during rush
  • Challenge of running in primarily residential?
  • Funding - where does that money come from?
  • Usability - even if they run frequently, if they're full, what use is it?
  • Peripheral traffic issues along the route - routing looks good on paper, but it may as well be a 20mi route
Needs & Challenges
  • A better bus network
  • exploding growth at hubs, along and proximate to the transit network, but no way to connect those hubs
  • West coast cities have significant amounts of express buses
  • More robust set of options is needed
  • making services more efficient, getting rid of hot spots to allow those resources to be reallocated (within the same region)
  • Equity - subsidising low income and high-need users
  • Political will
  • Getting people to see bikes as a priority
  • Addressing the safety issues
  • Getting people on a bike allows people to see the issues with the system
  • People can then see the need to take away parking and reallocate road space
  • Perception of scarcity of parking
  • Van pools - closed community systems to co-commute
  • Political will is required to hand over road space to improve utility of buses - we did it for bikes, maybe we can do it for buses
  • Pearl Street redesign - abutters didn't want to lose their parking, but wanted a bike lane
  • City builds parking lots as a 'temporary land use' to collect political will until they're 'not needed anymore'
  • Broad share access - financial accessibility to car sharing services is needed to allow car sharing to be effective across the board
  • In the absence of cross-town (feeder) transit, you don't have a way of reducing car users
  • What about parking?
  • People who have a car but barely use them, don't want to get rid of them
  • Dollar amount value of removing a car off the street
  • Buy back program?
  • Pilot programs!
  • PARKing day - extending it
  • Last Friday of this month - shutting down one lane of Memorial Drive
  • Partnering with Walk/Ride Day
  • Needs to be data-driven
  • 20mph speed limits? - Twenty is Plenty
  • Comprehensive freight/delivery planning
  • Co-loading terminals
  • Loading zones
617 days ago
Unfiled. Edited by Marc Ebuña 617 days ago
THE INDIGO LINE - Railroad Rapid Transit (Noah Berger)
Marc E Indigo Line Vision
Currently: Fairmount Branch of MBTA Commuter Rail
Current Timetable
Historical Timetable - earliest use of 'transit' in reference to Fairmount
Historical proposal for alternatives analysis for Fairmount from 1920s
94k people live within the 'catchment area' of the current corridor
84% black or latino
20% of the corridor is less than 18yo
significant need for transit accessibility
$21k/yr less than the rest of Boston
24% unemployement - 9.3% remainder of Boston
only 44% has some secondary education - 74% remainder of Boston
Longest commute times - average 1.25hr
24% don't own cars, 2x transit use than the rest of Boston
Poor investment leads to a self-fulfilling prophecy about low ridership
'It's not just about putting a station there...you're going to have an underused station that doesn't meet the needs of the people, What if we repackage it?...'
It's known by many names - people in the neighbourhood know about the rapid transit lines, 'Indigo Line' embodies the hybrid vision of transit service (like Blue Line) and commuter rail ('Purple Line').
'It's very easy to tell people why something wouldn't work - the engineering reasons, etc'
'Think rapid transit, use commuter rail'
  1. Platform raising at Uphams Corner
  1. Bridge replacements ($38 mil)
  1. Further station installations
'Butt ugly' stations - Slabs of concrete that may as well have come from East Germany
Flattened the fares in every station to be in Zone 1A - the same as monthly transit LinkPass, but no ability to use CharlieCard
Stations Today
Transit Development Vision
^ Community driven vision
Fear of gentrification is often used as an excuse to not invest in low income communities
The link between transit investment and gentrification are not 1:1
'Private developers are offering "cash buy-outs" - they're reengaging the residents and renters through square footage pricing' - gentrification testimonial
TOD - Getting ahead of gentrification
  • land trusts
  • building affordable housing NOW
MBTA Subsidy per Commuter Rail Line
'If you're running service the wrong way, you won't get the ridership you need'
Talbot Ave Station (Fairmount) and Shawmut Station (Red Line) are both equidistant from Codman Square
Shawmut has higher ridership (Fairmount is every 40 mins during RUSH - 60 mins off-peak)
The Vision - Short Term
Fare Collection - POP (proof of payment) with fare validators
$200 mil procurement under Patrick/Davey admin (as Transport Secretary)
Recently pulled back under Baker/Pollack admin
Current commuter rail setup is full trainset but with 3 cars closed, 2 cars open; all the negatives of regular commuter rail, none of the benefits of shorter trains
putting it on the map makes all the difference - it shows that you can expect the same level of service as transit
Frequency is what's really important, liberty to step onto the platform and have a train 15 mins away at most
Access to jobs
No wayfinding, no way to send the message that this is part of the solution
  • Eventually we have to deal with South Station - capacity, 15 min turnaround (3 mins in Japan)
  • 'Recoverability' in case train is late on previous run, buffer to ensure that the next run isn't delayed
  • Absolute minimum - brake test, crew, engineering requirements - 8 mins
  • Re: Smaller operating sets:
  • Rolling storage - nowhere else to put the equipment during the day
  • Evaluating braking tests
  • Interlining Franklin Line trains on Fairmount is another limitation
  • Paying for expansion/improvement
  • It's become the norm to need a sponsor to get your funding
  • Vision: Indigo dives under South Station, enters Silver Line tunnel, replaces that service
Audience: What Can We Do Now?
Fairmount as proving ground for a 'Boston Overground'
What's the best frequency with current equipment?
  • limited by the choke point at South Station
  • 7-8 min is the shortest accounting for recoverability

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