Crowdsourcing the Commute

Commuting in the New York region has gotten decidedly worse in recent years, as infrastructure ages and more people travel to the city for work. Over the past 25 years, rail trips in and out of Penn Station have nearly tripled, and bus trips have increased by 83 percent, according to a 2017 Regional Plan Association report. Over 1.6 million people commute into the city daily, with 320,000 coming from New Jersey, the report found.

“It seems so much more convenient for people to go to their phone and to be able to see when the bus is coming and then to be able to get on the bus and know that it’s a new bus and somebody is taking care of it,” said Dani Simons, a spokeswoman for the Regional Plan Association, a research and advocacy group for innovative approaches to transportation in the New York region. “That shouldn’t be so crazy. Public transit shouldn’t be miserable.”

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