Boston Strong

MBTA Vehicles Don Ribbons to Show Boston Pride

Ribbon stickers have started showing up on Green Line trains In a slightly less controversial move, the MBTA has started pasting Boston Strong stickers on vehicles in a show of solidarity after the Boston Marathon bombings. These ribbons join a growing list of ribbons that have been used to symbolize a number of causes.

The stickers are undoubtedly less obtrusive than the 'Boston Strong' and 'We are one Boston' messages that buses have started cycling on LED signs since the bombing. While the patriotic messages are inspiring, the signs are first and foremost for passenger information.

As we move farther and farther from the horrendous event, things will normalise and life will go on. This is a subtle but impactful way the MBTA can show its Boston pride.

Boston's Buses Soon to Remove 'Boston Strong' Messages

A bus going through South Boston proudly displays 'Boston Strong' on its head sign and side LED sign. At yesterday's MBTA Rider Oversight Committee meeting, it was revealed by bus operations representative Dave Carney that the T would soon be spreading the word to all drivers to remove the message 'Boston Strong'  from the cycled messages on bus LED signs.

While not explicitly mandated by federal ADA law, the signs are intended for passenger information. The patriotic message takes up a full 1/3 or 1/2 of the display's time since each portion of the message is shown for the exact same amount of time. This can mean that the buses' route information may not actually be displayed long enough to determine which route the bus is serving before passing the stop, depending on how fast the bus is approaching.

Speaking frankly, Carney noted that it will be an arduous process to take the message off buses since it needs to be removed bus by bus and some drivers may refuse to remove the message despite orders from their supervisors. If it persists, the agency may have to address individual drivers about making the change. Apparently each bus' head sign is individually programmed, a potential opportunity for operations improvement with the MBTA.