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Old 05-28-2014, 10:33 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post

Comparing public transit commutes with driving commutes isn't necessarily meaningful as the commutes are going to different places and are of a different length.
The stress levels are considerably different as well. For people in LA, even with "short" driving commutes, it is generally high stress driving in congestion. Research shows a transit ride as less stressful than comparable driving commute. Anecdotal evidence seems to match up with this for me in m circles, for people battling congestion during their drive.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/motoring/...-research.html
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Old 05-29-2014, 04:18 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Fortunately, most of us commute by car, which means shorter commutes. Those poor obese, depressed, divorced people in NYC on the other hand...

New Yorkers have longest commute times in the U.S.: report - NY Daily News


But commuting by rail and commuting by car are two different kinds of experiences. The first is arguably a lot less stressful than the second. On a train you can relax and read a newspaper or book, talk or text on your cellphone, get some work done on your laptop, check your email, have a conversation with someone else on the train, etc. Or just take a nap on your way to or from work. You can actually be productive while on your train commute, or just sit back and relax. It's up to you. Someone else is doing the driving for you. But you can't do any of those things while you are driving, at least not legally or safely. You can only drive and all that time on our commute is just wasted.
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Old 05-29-2014, 07:26 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,981 posts, read 102,540,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
But commuting by rail and commuting by car are two different kinds of experiences. The first is arguably a lot less stressful than the second. On a train you can relax and read a newspaper or book, talk or text on your cellphone, get some work done on your laptop, check your email, have a conversation with someone else on the train, etc. Or just take a nap on your way to or from work. You can actually be productive while on your train commute, or just sit back and relax. It's up to you. Someone else is doing the driving for you. But you can't do any of those things while you are driving, at least not legally or safely. You can only drive and all that time on our commute is just wasted.
Why should you be working on the way to/from work? It can be stressful to take a train and have it be late, making YOU late, having to make small talk with strangers, etc. The two have their pros and cons.
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Old 05-29-2014, 07:29 AM
 
3,492 posts, read 4,952,643 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
That might have something to do with traffic congestion. Correct me if I'm wrong but NYC has quite a few cars on the road, given its population.
Any statistics available for this?

I'd wager that NYC has an incredibly low number of "annual miles driven per capita". If we are only considering roads, not subways, I bet the numbers are very low. Sure the streets are always crowded, but the asphalt per capita is extremely low.

NYC has a very high number of cars on the road, but an absurdly high population. On a per capita basis, it should be low.
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Old 05-29-2014, 07:38 AM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Why should you be working on the way to/from work?
Why not? Get some stuff done rather than spend more on the office. [obviously depends on the job]. Many on commuter rail in the morning prefer to find another to use their non-driving time: nap. In the evening, don't miss your stop!

Quote:
It can be stressful to take a train and have it be late, making YOU late, having to make small talk with strangers, etc. The two have their pros and cons.
Cars can be late because of congestion just as much. Don't think you ever have to make small talk with strangers on the train, it's not done very much.

But cisco kid's response to NYC train riders ignored one obvious stressor: many aren't on sitting on the train: they're standing. There's no room. And even with a seat on a subway, having a laptop out seems a bit off.
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Old 05-29-2014, 07:46 AM
 
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I lived in Portland, OR. Taking the max regularly made me late. Because their street system sucks, driving also could lead to being late. Then I moved to a city with enough asphalt. I am almost never late to anything.
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Old 05-29-2014, 07:51 AM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,057 posts, read 16,066,811 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
But commuting by rail and commuting by car are two different kinds of experiences. The first is arguably a lot less stressful than the second. On a train you can relax and read a newspaper or book, talk or text on your cellphone, get some work done on your laptop, check your email, have a conversation with someone else on the train, etc. Or just take a nap on your way to or from work. You can actually be productive while on your train commute, or just sit back and relax. It's up to you. Someone else is doing the driving for you. But you can't do any of those things while you are driving, at least not legally or safely. You can only drive and all that time on our commute is just wasted.
Depends on the type of train and the person.

I find sitting on the maze in my car with a nice view in a comfortable seat listening to a podcast/audio book in the car where I can control the temperature or have a nice breeze to be way less stressful than standing on a packed BART squealing along that's about 80 degrees from the meat that's packed into the grinder and smells like body odor and god knows what has been ground into the carpets over 20 years of use. I don't like it $20-30 a day more, which is why I put up with BART to avoid the cost of parking in downtown San Francisco. The other reason I take BART is it's just as fast, maybe even faster, door to door than driving. It takes a long time to park and walk to BART and wait for the train, but it also takes a long time to get across the bridge and park in San Francisco. That's atypical. In most places driving is far faster and thus less stressful, likely to cause divorce, depression, and obesity than public transit, or so the study says.

I mean, on Amtrak I'd agree. On BART no. It's not uncomfortable outside of rush hour/Giants game. It's not really comfortable either.
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Old 05-29-2014, 08:01 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,981 posts, read 102,540,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Why not? Get some stuff done rather than spend more on the office. [obviously depends on the job]. Many on commuter rail in the morning prefer to find another to use their non-driving time: nap. In the evening, don't miss your stop!



Cars can be late because of congestion just as much. Don't think you ever have to make small talk with strangers on the train, it's not done very much.

But cisco kid's response to NYC train riders ignored one obvious stressor: many aren't on sitting on the train: they're standing. There's no room. And even with a seat on a subway, having a laptop out seems a bit off.
I can see telecommuting, but I don't get working on the way to work. Granted, I don't have a lot of experience with that type of work. Napping I can see!

I brought up the small talk b/c cisco brought up having a conversation with someone. I'd guess those conversations would be with strangers.

I agree about laptops, even a regular broadsheet newspaper would be hard to read on a crowded bus/train. You could maybe use a kindle or a phone.
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Old 05-29-2014, 08:55 AM
 
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Laptop work is better suited to commuter trains, especially ones with Wi-Fi, maybe not the best for subway, streetcar or light rail. I don't do day-job work on transit but I do a lot of volunteer work for nonprofits outside of work hours, and when riding light rail I often break out my phone (like everyone else) but instead of playing Candy Crush or whatever I'm usually checking email and following up on various projects, planning my schedule etc.
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Old 05-29-2014, 09:36 AM
bg7
 
7,697 posts, read 8,161,709 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
I can see telecommuting, but I don't get working on the way to work. Granted, I don't have a lot of experience with that type of work. Napping I can see!

I brought up the small talk b/c cisco brought up having a conversation with someone. I'd guess those conversations would be with strangers.

I agree about laptops, even a regular broadsheet newspaper would be hard to read on a crowded bus/train. You could maybe use a kindle or a phone.

Plenty of people work on the train - but it depends what type of Job you have. If you are a lawyer, an analyst, even doctor, a scientific researcher - you are paid to get the job done, its not an hourly pay you get but a salary. So if you need to catch up or get ahead on editing a document you wrote, researching the fast-food industry in China, reading the latest paper on stroke therapies etc, the train is perfect - minimal disturbance and generally surrounded by others doing the same. Its all AC and relatively modern too. Its also a good place to read the newspaper before you get home to the chaos of kids/dogs etc, even have a beer.

Having said that, BART sounds no fun. Like the subway. Anything too busy where you cannot sit, or hot, or noisy, is no fun.
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