By Jeff L. Tucker, The Chicago Times
CHICAGO – CTA President Dorval Carter announced on Thursday plans to alter schedules in an effort ease safety concerns and long wait time for passengers.
“CTA service has been under pressure for nearly three years, and recent job market and workforce challenges are compounding an already difficult time. From the market forces of the ‘great resignation’ to a very competitive job market and high attrition rates among bus and rail operators, our services are not meeting our high standards,” Carter said during a luncheon speech with Chicago business leaders.
The CTA has been inundated with complaints from passengers and city officials about overall service and safety. CTA ridership continues to lag and there is no sign it will recover to pre-pandemic levels.
Carter insisted that a shortage of train and bus operators is to blame for the long wait times. CTA reported that it has lost nearly 1,000 employees since the pandemic.
To remedy long wait times, Carter rolled out a new schedule that will be based on current rider patterns which he hopes will make wait times more consistent and limit any large gaps in CTA arrivals. Carter also emphasized that service hours will not change.
Carter also mentioned plans to hire new full-time employees as well as retired operators on a part time basis.