Starting Oct. 17, Metro-North Railroad is extending the "quiet car" concept to the Hudson and Harlem lines.
The change affects approximately 31 trains that operate between Grand Central and Poughkeepsie, Beacon, and Wassaic, according to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which runs the railroad.
The news was greeted with enthusiasm by a commuter group. "Our council has pushed for this initiative in the past," said David Buchwald, chairman of the Metro North Railroad Commuter Council. "We believe that giving riders a choice in their commuting environment will make for a more pleasant traveling experience.”
Quiet cars will be available on select peak trains and will have a "Q" in the timetable.
- During the AM Peak, the LAST CAR of these trains will be designated a quiet car.
- During the PM Peak, the FIRST CAR of these trains will be designated a quiet car. (Reverse–peak trains are not included in this pilot program.)
If you seek out a quiet car (or find yourself on one) here is what the MTA wants you to know:
- Do not use cell phones.
- Disable sound features on computers and other electronic devices.
- Conduct conversations in a subdued voice.
- Use headphones at a volume that cannot be heard by fellow passengers.
- This does not affect regular announcements, which will continue to be heard.
The agency also announced that conductors will use specially designed “Shhhhhh” cards "that explain the rules of etiquette in English and Spanish" on the cars, which are being branded as the place for a “Quiet CALMmute."
Metro-North will measure how successful the program is for possible expansion.
"We enthusiastically commend Metro-North for introducing quiet cars to the Harlem and Hudson lines," said David Buchwald, chairman of the Metro North Railroad Commuter Council. "Our Council has pushed for this initiative in the past. We believe that giving riders a choice in their commuting environment will make for a more pleasant traveling experience.”
Editor's Note: This article has been updated to include the comment from the Metro North Railroad Commuter Council.