A picture is worth 1,000 words - especially on public transit

Anyone who has ridden public transit for awhile has seen some bizarre things. Here we have some photographic evidence of same compiled by BuzzFeed. Head over there for even more photos.


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  • 1. A reason to change the CTA interior now, and not wait for the 7000s.
    2. Is someone dumping on people exercising their ADA rights on public transit.? Also, obviously these are not CTA seats.
    3. Obviously these are CTA seats. This would not have happened if CTA took Scooter's and my advice about the seating arrangement.
    4. A grammatical error typical of certain strata on comment boards.
    6. Apparently not a Chicago 4-star chef, but Chicago wasn't allowing cooking on food trucks either, until recently. Now, if she would share.

  • 1. Another reason why CTA should change the interiors now and not wait for the 7000s.
    2. Is someone dumping on persons exercising their ADA rights on public transit? Also, these are obviously not CTA seats.
    3. These are obviously CTA seats. This would not have happened if CTA took Scooter's and my advice about the seating arrangement (at least if the people are not contortionists).
    4. A grammatical error typical of certain strata on comment boards.
    6. Not a Chicago 4-star chef, but until recently Chicago didn't allow cooking on food trucks, either. Now, if she would share...

  • In reply to jack:

    Sorry, I was getting Server 503 errors. You may delete one.

  • Today's Hilkevitch is great.
    Apparently Ventra is a huge scam by the CTA to make money the old fashioned way, stealing it!
    They need to send that 1000 page contract to today's version of Professor Kingsfield's contract law class & see what contradictions & other scams they can find!

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    I went over this on chicagobus.org (at the bottom of the Ventra Card topic, and there really isn't a need to encumber this forum to repeat all that, except to say that like the Lottery, any person who feels compelled to use a prepaid debit card is going to get screwed, pretty much regardless of the issuer.

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    Oh, puleez. The fees mentioned in Hilkevitch's article only apply to the optional debit card part of the card. There are no hidden fees for the transit portion of the card.

    On top of that, the debit card fees are middle of the pack as far as debit cards fees go.

    Can we talk about something that really affects the majority of CTA riders, like the drivers and operators that only know two throttle settings, full on and full off?

  • In reply to SpinyNorman:

    Well, there is the $5 deposit fee which at best gets credited to your account if you register, or you pay if you don't.

    There is also the new $5/month dormancy fee.

    So, you were not entirely correct.

  • In reply to jack:

    Why on earth would you pay $5 for a card that you don't register an use? The current Chicago Card also costs $5 for the initial purchase, so it's no different.

    Yes, the dormancy fee is new, but I imagine it will affect a very small fraction of riders.

  • In reply to SpinyNorman:

    Spiny, there is a difference between the $5 purchase fees for the Chicago Card and the new Ventra. With the Chicago Card, you do NOT get that money back. With Ventra, when you register it, you will get the money applied as value on the card for fare usage.

  • In reply to Kevin O’Neil:

    Huh? From the Chicago Card home page: "Unless otherwise indicated by the CTA, the $5 purchase fee for Chicago Card is waived for first-time users who register their cards."

  • In reply to SpinyNorman:

    OK, you're right. I'm thinking of the fee you must pay to replace a lost or stolen card.

  • In reply to Kevin O’Neil:

    Yes, I believe replacing a non-expired card will cost you. However, getting a new card after your current card has expired is free.

  • It wasn't immediately clear who is getting these fees, but the Hilkevitch article implies the CTA may not get much of the fees being charged. Cubic states they didn't ask for the fees, which seems like a lie to me. Somebody is asking for and getting those fees, so I'm curious who they are.

  • In reply to chris:

    Again, go back to the chicagobus.org discussion about the Money Network. Whatever bank is behind First Data is making most of the fees, just like GE Capital Bank is making most of the fees off the Walmart card.

    However, indications in several of the Hilkevitch articles are that CTA does get a commission off purchases made with the debit portion of the card.

  • In reply to chris:

    Someone related to someone in charge would be my guess.

  • I would rater stan up than to sit there and look at that.

  • In reply to ibilldavis:

    I don't think that the generic Hispanic looking female with the glasses with black frames was looking at that.But maybe her pupils were a bit slanted to her left.

  • According to the Sun-Times, the RTA also has some serious questions about Ventra

    Plus the contract is 1000+ pages. Who knows what new surprises lurk there.

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    The RTA is an "oversight" agency, in the same sense that Kosher salt has religious significance when Christopher Kimball uses it on a pork roast.

    I'm surprised that Claypool even replied.

    But, note, Norman, the dormancy fee was mentioned again.

  • He may be enjoying that book or he may a transit undercover dick.

  • In reply to Aquinas wired:

    Picture 3?

  • The RTA has now said they will not permit any debit option for reduced fare cards or ride free cards, which will cost the RTA $2.60 to purchase & then add the photos & mailing costs.
    So now we know what a smart card actually costs, so why didn't the RTA give the ride free people the option of buying them, instead of sending out the miserable swipe cards?
    I have two neighbors that have either the reduced or free cards & both have had to get them replaced after a few months of use. Both said they would have paid the $5 for the convenience. Both were defective & one CTA station agent threatened to have him arrested when the card came up as "Code 57" on the L station fare machine, which means a stolen card, which it wasn't, just didn't work anymore.
    And where can we find out what the codes are, for that matter, what do the farebox beeps mean?

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    Trib article with the info http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-rta-no-debit-option-on-reducedfare-ventra-cards-20130320,0,3355403.story

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    The explanation for that one was when Blago's free ride program was repealed and the RTA had to invalidate all the cards and start over, it said that it knew that the CTA Open Fare system was coming, so it would only fork up the cost of mag stripe senior cards, pending whatever CTA came up with in the next couple of years. The next couple of years is now now.

    What I didn't like from the articles is the implication that a half fare senior would have to preload a card, instead of using it as identification and then waiving a bank card, and then would be subject to the dormancy fee.

    But I guess that's what one gets when mismanagement of the transit system is divided between 4 agencies.

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