As the CTA continues to test "a new generation of "L" cars,"I was wondering what formal mechanism the transit agency would use to get customer feedback on the Series 5000 rail cars. For instance, there has been little love for the aisle-facing, longitudinal seating. See my post and comments.
Well, it turns out there is no "formal" way for riders to comment on the new cars, such as a public hearing. But a CTA spokesperson said, "Customers always are welcome to submit their comments regarding anything
relating to CTA service. Call 1-888-YourCTA or email to
The spokesperson also noted that "customer input on the aisle facing seat concept was evaluated long before the CTA went out to bid."
Here's her say on the issue of feedback and why the CTA is using the aisle-facing seating:
"In 2004, prior to seeking a vendor to manufacture new rail
cars, CTA reconfigured seating on two 3200 Series cars and operated
them in regular service in order to get customer feedback. During the
test period, promotional signs were posted on the reconfigured rail cars
to encourage customers to provide feedback on the new cars.
"With the growth in ridership, CTA considered the benefits of the
aisle-facing seating such as space for an additional wheelchair
position, more room for customers with strollers, backpacks and luggage
and more space for customer movement and for standing customers. The
added space is especially important during periods when the trains are
more crowded such as during rush hour and for large crowds attending
events in the City. Customer comments from the test period also were
considered. In addition, rail systems throughout the country were using
aisle-facing seating for more space and customer comfort."
So, it sounds like the longitudinal seating is here to stay. But hey, if
you have an opinion, share it with the CTA -- on this or any other