Tag Archives: Jason Chin-Fatt

Survey sees ‘good,’ ‘bad’ and ‘ugly’ of subways


| brennison@queenscourier.com

For those heading into the subway, a can of paint and a light bulb may be of more use than a MetroCard.

In its inaugural “State of the Station Platforms” survey, the Straphangers Campaign found subway stations with peeling paint, graffiti and cracked floors — but the findings were not all negative.

“We found the good, the bad and the ugly,” said Jason Chin-Fatt, the Straphanger Campaign organizer who oversaw the survey.

The non-profit surveyed 12 platform conditions, including the presence of garbage cans (the good); rats (the bad); and broken light fixtures (the ugly).

Among the good were garbage cans at every station and none were found to be overflowing. Only six percent of platforms contained large garbage bags.

Many seasoned straphangers may be more familiar with the bad and ugly, however.

Rats have long been associated with entering the depths of the subways, and the rodents were found during the survey, but at just 11 percent of stations. This still landed it in the bad category, which was any condition found at between 10 and 50 percent of stations. More bad included graffiti at 20 percent of stations, exposed wiring at 28 percent and cracked floors on a third of platforms.

The ugly — conditions found at more than 50 percent of platforms — consisted of broken lights seen at half the stations assessed, substantial water damage at 53 percent of stations and the most frequently observed condition, substantial peeling paint at 79 percent of stations.

The MTA stated that improving the appearance and cleanliness of the system’s stations is among its top priorities.

“We have deployed more personnel and resources to remove trash from stations in a timely manner while we continue the station component program, which targets specific repairs and improvements at more stations around the system,” said an MTA spokesperson.

The non-profit’s survey was based on observations at 120 randomly-selected subway stations — including 17 in Queens — between July 11 and September 24, 2011.