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Election roundup: What do politicians from Savin Hill have against the T?

Annissa Essaibi George gets interviewed by boston.com, and like Marty Walsh, who also grew up in Savin Hill, acknowledges she just doesn't take the T. Also, the idea of making the T free, outside of maybe a couple of bus line in poor neighborhoods, is silly, she says, without naming the idea's two proponents - her competitors Michelle Wu and Kim Janey, both of whom are, or at least were in the Before Times, frequent T riders.

She tackles other MBTA and citywide issues, as well as the question of why she isn't consistent with whether there's a hyphen in her last name or not (this year, she's going unhyphenated).

Speaking of Walsh and Janey, the Dorchester Reporter writes Janey's trying to re-assemble that old Walsh coalition that propelled him from being a state rep little known outside of Dorchester to mayor.

WBUR looks at how the candidates would address Boston's infamous racial wealth gap.

Enough of these forums where each candidate gets to speak in turn. WBUR, the Globe, WCVB and UMass Boston will hold an old-fashioned debate at WBUR's arena, um, auditorium, at its Comm. Ave. studios.

If you decide to get lunch at the Bon Me truck at Dewey Square tomorrow, around, say, 1:30 p.m., yes, that will be Wu serving up your sandwich or rice bowl. Wu, who, as a Menino "fellow" way back in 2010, began the work to get food trucks to Boston, says her time behind the counter will show her support for small businesses.

Still haven't decided which of the 17 at-large City Council candidates to vote for? There'll be a meet-n-great for them between 1 and 2:30 p.m. at Brighton Marine, 77 Warren St. in Brighton. It's outdoors, but masks are encouraged.

You get to vote for up to four of them. Incumbents Michael Flaherty and Julia Mejia are running again; the other two at-large councilors - Essaibi George and Wu - are trying to move offices to the other side of City Hall.


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Great; another out of touch politician that has no idea what it's like to ride the T everyday. Just what we need in a city that cannot fit any more cars and whose non-car infrastructure has been ignored for 40 years.

Boston...world class or world's ass?

Voting closed 82

I see her signs all over the city but haven't spoke to a single person who is passionate about supporting her (or supports her at all, really). Janey and Wu however seem to be very popular at least in my social circle but I'm brown and take the T. Whats up with that?

Voting closed 51

Um, perhaps that's why you haven't spoken with anyone who is passionate about her.

I hate Guns N Roses, but I know people who are passionate about them because I have spoke with them. Doesn't mean I like Guns N Roses but I know people who do.

Voting closed 27

I bet most of those homes are owned by BPD, BFD or construction union members or in the case of larger buildings, the landlord put up the signs, not the tenants.

Lot of Janey signs on fences which aren't associated with specific residences out there, Doug Bennett style, but no doubt she has a ton of support (for some reason).

Voting closed 26

Those people vote and pay taxes too.

Hate to ruin that whole democracy thing for you but others with differing opinions are out there.

Voting closed 45

Believe me, I get that city residing cops, firefighters and carpenters have a big political voice and have no problem with it. However, if the original poster who asked doesn't interact with those folks very much, that would explain why they might not understand who is supporting A E-G. Like I don't know anyone who voted for Pat Rose as union president but that's because I don't know any BPD patromen - see?

The landlord thing is kind of more bullshit IMO but signs don't win elections anyways.

Voting closed 31

Exactly .If signs won elections, then Doug Bennett would be president

Voting closed 22

Sorry Mr. Softy. I didn't know that offering a counterpoint was some type of "mad" response.

Voting closed 28

Nothing like the calm, reasoned counterpoint of suggesting that the person you're responding to must not be aware of people with other opinions.

Voting closed 14

She got endorsed by the BPD commissioner, takes a lot of contributions from cops, and I would expect her to side with the police department and unions against any reforms.

Voting closed 30

She’s in third place yet within striking distance of getting on the ballot in November.

My advice is to broaden your circle. Get out of the bubble once in a while.

Voting closed 26

I already knew I would never vote for her with her pledging to block bike lanes: https://www.universalhub.com/2021/west-roxbury-group-gears-fight-bike-la....

The T is just crazy. Exactly what kind of city does she think she is living in? And where does she plan on putting all of the extra cars? Then again, I'm guessing she is only really interested in those who can afford to park them both at their house and their job.. Which in Boston does not seem like a winning combination.

Can she go run for the mayor like almost anywhere else in the country? Just throw a dart, and it'll likely make more sense.

Voting closed 25

an annual bike tour, on July 24. So did Michelle Wu and Ayanna Pressley (who spoke before the ride)

Voting closed 8

I am neither an economist nor smart enough to know if we could totally free the T for all riders, but it’s clear to me that big employers, adjacent businesses, sports and concert venues, higher ed institutions, hospitals, etc are the biggest beneficiaries of having a taxpayer and rider subsidized public transportation system. Many companies already pay into the MBTA by buying passes as an employee benefit. One of the biggest complaints about MBTA funding is “I live in Medfield and work in Bellingham; why should I subsidize Red Line commuters?” Well, it’s worth investigating ways to shift costs away from riders/tax payers and onto the corporations and institutions who expect the T to deliver their workforce and customers.

I also think frictionless rides will greatly improve efficiency and satisfaction.

I don’t necessarily mind paying for my T trips, but I remember being younger and making a lot less money and feeling that a T pass was a bargain, whereas now the cost feels burdensome. Also, once upon a time you could scrounge change from your couch to get round-trip subway or bus fare and it was so much easier just buying a few tokens at the window or throwing some dimes into the bus fare basket. Not to mention the modern misery of people reloading cards while trying to board or distracting the driver between stops trying to get the damn thing to work/accept bills.

The ability to open all doors at all Green Line/Silver Line/ bus stops and ending the need for fare enforcement will improve rider experience and improve working conditions for employees. It will lead to faster, easier on/offload times and I imagine most bus drivers who end up in rider altercations are put in that position due to fare evasion/refusal.

A frictionless and/or free T is a design problem. Just because a solution isn’t immediately obvious or currently apparent doesn’t mean it’s impossible. In the end, it may not be the model we choose to go with, but the current model of increasing the financial burden on riders while offering deteriorating service seems unsustainable and it warrants fresh and original thinking.

Voting closed 57

When it comes to supply and demand, everyone seems to agree that raising the price of something will probably lead to less purchases of that product (although overall profit might increase).

But the same people just can't get their head around the idea that lowering the price of the T, and removing that friction, will result in more rides.

Voting closed 17

First - so what? If this is true, build that into the design problem.

Second, the T ridership has grown significantly over the last 20 years despite fares more than doubling.

Third, we should be encouraging more people to ditch cars and take public transportation.

Fourth, increased ridership creates increased traffic and access to local businesses and incentives spending in areas well-served by transit.

Voting closed 14

Having the subsidized charlie cards taken away after graduating from BPS was one of the biggest culture shocks for me. Before, I used to make so many more trips across the city just because my T trips were free. However, as soon as my trips started to cost the full fare, I had to start being mindful of how much it all was costing.

A trip I used to make a ton was from Boston to Waltham, and I would always take the green line to North Station and hop on the commuter rail. It was quick and simple. Having it switch from being free to $9.40 one way made that trip extremely expensive. If you were getting paid min wage, having an 1 1/2 hours of work just dedicated to paying for transportation is ridiculous.

The alternative- taking the 1 & 70 was much cheaper, but tacked on an extra 45 min and an extra 20 min of walking, while only costing $1.70. Don't even get me started on how unreliable the 70 and 1 can get some days with 2 or 3 busses bunching and terrible transfer penalties between the two.

This may be an extreme example, but there are so many people who would benefit from making higher quality and faster trips which they were previously priced out of.

Voting closed 46

If you're a city official who lives and works in Boston, but never takes public transportation, you should recognize that as a huge point of shame. You're part of the problem and not representative of the vast majority of your constituents.

Voting closed 96

So Essaibi George never takes the T, Janey always takes the T, and Wu's every trip on the T is documented on her Twitter. Where do the rest of candidates stand?

Voting closed 42

Doesn’t the Mayor of Boston have a 24-hour driver? What’s this about always taking the T?

Voting closed 24

cover the entire City using the T every day. I think that someone driving, or being driven, would likely be working more hours and covering more ground.

Voting closed 19

Wu doesn't take the T every day, or didn't, before the pandemic, but when she was going to spend the day at City Hall she would (in a trip that would require at least one transfer, either from a bus to a train or from commuter rail to subway), sometimes with two little kids in tow.

Last I heard, there is a Red Line stop at Savin Hill.

Voting closed 33