From Robert Whitcomb’s “Digital Diary,’’ in GoLocal24.com
An article in The Globe by Mark Pothier, an editor there, about the Plymouth & Brockton Street Railway Co. (a charming old name), which serves many of Boston’s southern suburbs and Cape Cod, brought back my memories of traveling on the P&B’s buses between Boston and the South Shore when I had summer jobs in high school and college. Mr. Pothier, for his part, has been commuting on the P&B since 2017, after often-nightmarish car commuting that began in 2003.
Back in the late ‘60s, the traffic on the roads to Boston, especially the Southeast Expressway (which the radio folks often called “The Distressway’’), was awful. It’s probably worse now, as Greater Boston’s population and wealth have grown. There is, it is true, commuter rail service again on the South Shore, but it’s more expensive than the bus.
While the buses, like the cars, also get gridlocked, at least you can read, snooze and brood on them, and if your bus gets into an accident, at least it isn’t your fault. The bus motion sometimes produces a touch of car sickness in some of us, and they tend to lurch, but still…
My question is whether private commuter bus lines might help supplement in more places the buses of such public-transportation agencies as the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority and the MBTA. And perhaps they could offer onboard perks, such as drinks, snacks and newspapers and magazines (if any such pubs survive). Anything to make a better and denser transportation system for those unwilling or unable to drive.