A light rail ride comes to a sudden stopIf the Mass...

the Forum

August 01, 1994

A light rail ride comes to a sudden stop

If the Mass Transit Administration is interested in increasing its light rail ridership, they need a lesson in civility.

Recently we took our 6-year-old grandson for a fun day at the Inner Harbor. We went to the Timonium Business Park stop to catch the light rail at noon.

When the train came up, we had not yet gotten the last ticket out of the machine, due to a fussy dollar. We held up our hands to have the engineer wait a second longer, but he disregarded our frantic waving and simply took off.

We had to wait another 20 minutes for another train. (We were the only ones at the stop. What's another 15 to 20 seconds?)

After a wonderful day at the Inner Harbor, we went over to Camden Yards to board the light rail for home.

After looking at the Sunday schedule, we saw a 7:36 p.m. train for Timonium. It arrived and we hopped on, only to be to let out at North Avenue with the explanation, "The train goes no further on Sunday evenings." Where was this posted in the station? It was nowhere visible.

We were literally dumped in a part of town that we are not familiar with in the fading daylight.

The trainman suggested a cab or walking over to Greenmount Avenue to get a bus but retracted the idea as being too dangerous. We ended up on North Avenue and waved for taxis to no avail for 15 minutes.

Finally, a good-hearted soul stopped, even though he was on his way home, and picked us up. Thank goodness we had some cash left to afford the ride back to Timonium. What if we hadn't the money?

So please have the light rail post changes in the schedules at the stations. We could have planned to be on the last train back to Timonium.

We were not alone on the train, as a few others were likewise uninformed as to the Sunday schedules and were having trouble getting a cab to stop.

We were lucky, but how soon before someone isn't?

Elliott and Gail Burd


Ride the Rails

Another very successful Artscape Festival was celebrated in July, much of the success owing to the Mass Transit Administration's Light Rail and Metro systems.

The two Light Rail stops at the festival site, one right in the middle of the site, enabled festival attendees to avoid searching for a parking space. On Artscape weekend 20,000 people rode Light Rail.

The MTA radio and print ads recommending the Metro and Light Rail as a method of travel to Artscape were wonderful.

Here in the Artscape offices, we always encouraged people calling for directions to park at a Light Rail station and ride the rails.

Our partnership with the MTA has been pleasant and productive for both of us; it will continue to be our pleasure to say "travel right, travel Light.`

Jane Vallery-Davis


The writer is director of development and public relations for Artscape.

See Baltimore

I read with great offense on July 21 the editorial, "W(h)ither the CFL?" reprinted from the July 7 Toronto Star.

Among other things, it described Baltimore as a second-rate city.

After living in the Baltimore area all my life, I strongly disagree that Baltimore is second rate.

I would have to wonder if the person who wrote this editorial ever visited or lived in Baltimore.

I am extending to him/her a personal invitation to come and visit this fine American city. My family and I will give them a first-rate tour of a first-rate city.

Vincent T. Bands


Drinking at games

The crowds that swell Memorial Stadium for Canadian Football League games attest to the pent-up desire to have professional football in our fine city.

The game itself appears not too different from what we perceive as standard professional football.

Unfortunately, it comes at the wrong season of the year and may well change conditions enough to be a problem to our community around the stadium.

Watching football in 90-degree weather brings shirtless crowds consuming a considerable amount of alcoholic beverages.

It would be interesting to see the per capita alcohol consumption of the crowd for fall football versus summer football. There is no control over the amount sold and consumed by any individual or by the fans as a whole.

What should not be lost is that damage control starts with prevention.

Before this seasonal change becomes a problem, it may be helpful to look at expected changes in security, regulations, laws and common sense as we look at this as a potentially explosive problem.

Summer football can be fun, but let's not have excessive alcohol consumption mar this comeback of football in Baltimore.

If we can bar cigarette smoking from stadium events, let us remember that cigarette smoking kills the individual that smokes, but excessive alcohol consumption can easily spread to the death of others.

Let us rethink this issue and practice as much prevention as we can for our citizens.

Raymond D. Bahr, M.D.


Names and games

I understand that the latest polls show Maryland Republicans still favoring Helen Bentley as their candidate for governor as opposed to Ellen Sauerbrey and other candidates.

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