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Consumer Complaints

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It would be tough to call the CTA's new Bombardier 5000-series rail cars fan favorites in light of gathering criticism on the comfort of their ride. It might be too late to turn back or make wholesale changes, but a damning consensus is coming together that getting your feet mashed and your view obstructed by crotches is an unfavorable experience. Riders seem to love the smooth acceleration and quiet braking, as well as various technological upgrades, but they're not digging on the awkward, stifling spaces. These trains are looking a lot like the MTA's newest models— built for maximum capacity with little regard for sight lines or private space. That's an especially harsh pill to swallow considering our trains spend a lot more time above ground. Being able to take in the passing scenery is what makes the CTA special, and is of immeasurable value to the quality of travel. We get it, ridership is up and the race for capacity is on. But where's the intersection of quality and quantity is this case? [Trib, image: CTA Tattler]