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The MBTA helps its riders get in shape

Porter Square

Why, yes, of course, the up escalator at Porter Square on the Red Line isn't working this week, giving riders a chance to see just how fast they can climb from the platform 105 feet (10 stories) below street level. Melissa Leach paused before her ascent to show us the scene.

April Berry notes the stairs are not for the faint of heart:

I did those stairs yesterday and I seriously thought my legs were going to buckle.

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Ignore this post... duplicate

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The T must have some of the worst contract management skills in the industry. Who in the world owns an escalator that long, but doesn't have a service contract on it that requires the vendor to repair it in a timely fashion? Are they still using Kone? What a horror.

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KONE can only do so much. The escalators at Porter are Westinghouse. They were doomed to be worthless pieces of shit from the moment they were installed. KONE needs to rip them out and install their TransitMaster escalators.

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...we've spotted an Escalator Nerd! Train Freaks are pretty common around here and we won't talk about our resident Open Records Obsessionist, but this is the first sighting of this rarest of esoteric knowledge-fonts!

Should we start up a thread on antique wooden escalators?

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It's like a day without Orange Juice if one of the escalators at the Porter Square T Station WASN'T out of service. It's a blue moon when they ALL work, at the same time!

I don't know what it is but the T cannot keep these escalators working, even after monstrous repairs. I know a few years ago the entire escalator was redone, and they still break down. I know its a long escalator but seriously..

I don't think its maintenance, they are always working on it, so its not for neglect.

I swear the station leaks. There's always water stains everywhere in that station. I just wonder if water leaking under the escalator that keeps making it break down.

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We just had a blue moon. And yet...

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Hopefully the escalator from the lobby level (or where you swipe your Charlie card to get to the platforms) to the street exit is working. Not as long as this one but still another climb; imagine the looks on commuters' face after they've made that long ascent if that other escalator were not working.

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It was, thankfully.

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Hire some Teamster affiliated Sherpas to carry passengers up those stairs!

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Surely they're in the Top 10 list of hideous MBTA "artwork" installations.

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I'm not crazy about those gloves either. Then there's that bizarre wooden hand with the crossed fingers way down at the end of Park Street under. But those strange bullet shaped non-entity things on pedestals at Wood Island take the cake. They make no sense whatsoever.

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As I like to call those pieces of art.

Actually there was an article somewhere, maybe in the Metro, that explains that art work. If you notice there's two of them, one over each track. Each one is slightly different. Notice how many fingers each one is holding it. It corresponds to track number. So they are telling you the track number.

Of course since its so cryptic you'd never know that unless someone told you, now you know.

Those bullet things at Wood Island... honestly I think its a very sexual piece of art work. It reminds me of well... you can use your imagination on that one.

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I don't see them very often so maybe that's why I still like them. There are some amusing bits--"The Creation of Adam"-reference and one beastly glove attacking a smaller one.

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When the station first opened, and artwork in the T was not as prevalent as now, those gloves were considered tres cool by me and my friends. At the risk of sounding totally unhip, I still think they're cool.

(FWIW: I know that using the words "unhip", "tres", and "cool", mark me as a dinosaur and make me automatically inelligible for anything but derisive laughter from the young art majors in the crowd. I'll further shame myself by saying that my favorite piece of public art is a fountain in the Public Garden featuring a somewhat art deco panther that resembles a large hood ornament. So far as I've been able to discern, via random polling of friends and acquaintances, I'm the only person who likes it. I don't care.)

(FWIW 2: Info about the gloves, and the artist, at Wikipedia - Glove Cycle)

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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My favorite is the "Disco Windmill" between Wood Island and Airport Stations (at the corner of Neptune Road). When the wind gets it spinning around while the sun is shining, it makes an absolutely fabulous display of moving colors!

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I know that ascent is quite the hike and should be fixed....but.....

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Ah yes, the old "you can't be upset about this because there are starving children in Africa" counterpoint. You know it's possible to harbor negative feelings about more than one thing at a time?

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So if you come out to your car in the morning and see someone bashed your windshield in for whatever reason, I assume you wouldn't get angry? Because some people in the world do not have access to cars, and they walk everywhere. So you would walk to work and not complain? I could go on about hundreds of different situations, but you get my drift. Your line of thought is easily debunked.

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...but people with weakened legs, carrying parcels of all sizes and weights, pregnant women, older folk, small children, people with service animals, and generally all sorts of people who can still walk around and DON'T need wheelchairs, yet still would have a very hard time dealing with stairs --let alone ten stories' worth-- apparently are too "First World" for you to feel any kind of sympathy towards them.

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I know it sucks. And I've taken the stairs plenty a time just because I felt like it, but it's not THAT bad. The key is to do the "every other step" thing on the stairs. It may even be fewer strides to do "every other step" than to walk up the stopped escalator.

Anyway; why don't they reverse the working "down" escalator?! Hello, MBTA?!

Also: maintenance is not the problem. There is a dedicated duo which ONLY works on these escalators, and they know them damn well.

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,,, for people with health problems.

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n/t

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Oh, ok, so there is a working elevator for those with, for example, a breathing disorder, who would find it difficult or impossible to climb up ten stories.

Still, running the remaining escalator in the UP direction as a matter of convenience would seem like a no-brainer...

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My sentiments exactly.

I did those stairs yesterday and I seriously thought my legs were going to buckle.

It's a sad commentary on society when someone feels like dying after climbing 150 ft of stairs. Yes, I'm sure it sucks, especially on a hot, humid day. Hopefully, this person is resorting to hyperbole to make their point. Somehow, I doubt it.

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Even when the elevator is working, I still take these stairs down in the morning and up in the evening. If you look around, a little less than half the people are taking the stairs. The ones taking the escalator are either the elderly or middle-aged adults in poor health.

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It's a sad commentary on society when someone would rather jump to conclusions about another person's health or fitness, and subsequently assume things about them and berate them, before wondering if perhaps the "hyperbole" comes from actual health problems or physical conditions that turn a ten-story climb into an ordeal.

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So, just because you're hale and hearty and are in good enough shape that you can choose to take the stairs "because you feel like it," you believe everyone should be as fit as you?

Next time you see a pregnant woman or a 70 year-old person take the escalator, be sure to chastise them for not doing the "every other step" thing on the stairs.

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I'm not fit. I have a good amount of weight to lose. Not fat, really, but not in shape here. I do not go to the gym, nor have an exercise routine, and I probably eat too large a serving every day. A pregnant woman or 70-year-old should take the brand-spanking-new elevators, hello!

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But I'm still grateful for the escalator at Forest Hills sometimes: Like after I've walked from City Hall to Back Bay and then gotten on an Orange Line where the air conditioning is something more imagined than actual. Or sometimes I'm just tired. It happens, so I'm not going to judge the people on the escalator when I do take the stairs.

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The issue wasn't whether you were "fit" or not, but whether you were fit enough that you can make the choice at all. There's a million reasons why someone who can walk normally would be seriously inconvenienced, if not hurt, by climbing these stairs. While an elevator would solve their problem, these were put in place for people in wheelchairs, for baby strollers, for people with leg casts or other such major impairments to their mobility, and it can't be guaranteed that the hypothetical pregnant woman or 70 year-old would be able to just pop into one.

Amusingly, this is one of the cases where showing sympathy instead of scorn would have been easier and quicker for everyone involved in this discussion.

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I didn't show scorn. You're blowing my reaction out of proportion.

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If I'm not feeling too lazy. It is a great workout. I used to see a half dozen kids from some high school athletics team regularly run the stairs on the left side up and down 4 or 5 times. I wish I still had that kind of energy.

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I saw a (thankfully) empty baby carriage bounce down all those stairs before. The owner was running after it shouting "IT'S EMPTY!" over and over to mile of horrified folks going up and down the escalator. Felt bad for the guy but it was mildly amusing.

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By a bunch of guys with Tommy guns?

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Oof. A reference to one of the worst of the ZAZ output.

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What reference is this?

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There's a scene where a gun battle's about to break out in a train station and a baby carriage goes bouncing down the stairs (which I learned from that link is an homage to a similar scene in Battleship Potemkin).

Of course, Leslie Nielsen did it best.

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Oh, right. I forgot that was Untouchables first. Now I feel like one of those people I make fun of for not knowing what a parody is referencing. D:

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I have a love/hate relationship with those stairs. I hate how long it takes just to get to the trains but love that there are so many stairs. They're great if you like hiking and want to test yourself every once in a while. Back when I was taking the Fighter Fitness class at Redline Fight Sports, I'd force myself to take the stairs skipping a step each time, just for the added burn after the class.

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Whenever I find myself at the bottom of that slope (and without a backpack or other luggage), I try to run up the stairs. I can usually make it to 2nd to last landing before I'm just sort of laboriously lunging, but I've made it a few times.

After that, of course, it's almost impossible for me to even walk.

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