Wednesday, April 02, 2008


A fair percentage of Kingston area residents travel to Dutchess County workday mornings to take the trains to NYC. Those of you, who use Metro North, have noticed the increase in the fares as of March first. These increases apply only to passengers getting on and off the train in New York, not
Connecticut. Someone want to tell me why? We don’t pay enough in commuter taxes?

Monthly and weekly tickets are now about 4 percent more, and one-way and round-trip fares will grow by as much as 7 percent. This comes at a time when gas prices are rising and we should be giving an incentive to commuters to use public transportation.

It used to cost about 11 cents a mile to commute by train and 31 cents a mile to drive, the cost of driving goes up reflecting the price of gas, so why hike the rail cost? To cover pay raises for the top officials?

Economically and ecologically, mass transit has always been the better choice. The rate hike will have a negative impact on working class people who use the line. It's not just rich people going to investment banking jobs on Wall Street.

My Dream would be public rail service to Kingston. I witnessed the passenger cars of Ringling Brothers Circus heading north on the CSX line last summer, so its not a safety issue. But as serious as I am, it will be decades before we witness any plans for Metro North to serve the west side of the Hudson River above Newbergh, if ever.

This is one of the major economic roadblocks that Albany refuses to address for Ulster & Greene Counties. Economic growth on the east side of the river is enhanced by the commuter rail, we deserve the consideration ALBANY!

But until then, we will feel the financial pinch even as we do the right thing by using mass transit. Question: Whatever happened to the Kingston/Rhinebeck Ferry Plan?


Anonymous said...

On the surface, i agree with the benefits of rail service to Kingston. It would be nice to have that type of access to NYC and Stewart. You must be careful of the crime and drug trade that will also ride the rails. I can refer to the Baltimore suburbs. Several years age they placed a light rail service to their 'burbs. Criminals would come up from the city, do their dealing, and hope back on the train. Probably not unlike the buses that now serve us. Now dedicated police are at every stop looking over the parking lots and ride many of the trains. Again, I like the idea but security would need to be looked at. Besides, this side of the river always seems to be lacking, so I don't think this will happen anyway.

Anonymous said...

I will continue my journey to Poughkeepsie every workdayfor the train regardless of the increase because drivers on the thruway and Rt 17 are nuts.

I know the gas cost and maintenance on the car still out-weighs the round trip fare.

Those of us who need the Metro, include the fare in our tax returns anyway.