The subterranean countdown clocks that let commuters know how long they'll have to wait for the next train will be installed at over 150 stations next year. Currently in use only on the L line, the electronic marvels have long been familiar to subway riders in Washington and London. New MTA Czar Jay Walder says studies show that riders in London felt three-times worse waiting when they didn't know how long the delay would be, so get ready to feel thrice better, New York!
NYC Transit promises that the 1, 4 and 6 lines will be providing the real-time information by December 2010, but we're wondering if we can get a countdown clock for that deadline. And riders on the lettered lines won't be getting any countdowns until at least 2014. Gene Russianoff, a staff lawyer for the Straphangers Campaign, tells the Times, "This is what riders want." But Andrew Albert, chairman of the New York City Transit Riders Council, isn't so easily impressed: "It would be even more useful if they install a repeater on the street, so people can have time to get a cup of coffee or a newspaper."