MP hits out at Subway over service

PASSENGERS deserve a better deal from Glasgow's Subway, according to a city MP.

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Ann McKechin has claimed subway passengers deserve a better deal
Ann McKechin has claimed subway passengers deserve a better deal

Ann McKechin, Glasgow North Labour MP, said that travellers have had to contend with price rises but endure closures and service suspensions.

The MP, whose constituency includes five of the 15 stations, wants SPT to be more accountable to passengers by displaying information about performance on punctuality and reliability at stations.

SPT currently publishes its figures on its website regularly and said it is in line with the rail industry standard and requirements.

The MP met officials from SPT to put points she said have been in response to constit-uents concerns.

She said: "We all have a great love for our historic Subway, but I have been struck over the last year by the number of constituents who have complained to me about both price and service. They have had to endure three differ-ent fare structures in 2013 alone as well as the considerable inconvenience and delay as new ticket machines were installed.

"Despite an across-the-board fare increase of 9% in 2012 and further rises in price since the new smart ticketing system was introduced the reliability of the service is still poor."

She said the SPT Twitter account alone has notified of 22 closures or suspensions in the last three months, one every six days on average.

She also complained about the new smart card ticket prices which charges £3 for a card unless you apply for a personalised card, which she said discriminates against visitors to the city.

She said: "I can't believe that we are advertising a charge for visitors in the year when Glasgow is hosting the Commonwealth Games.

A spokeswoman for SPT said: "Our priority is to modernise the Subway to make it more connected, flexible and accessible.

"That is why we have embarked on a £288million project which will deliver new stations, new trains, smart ticketing, signalling, and improved tunnel infrastructure.

"All of this work will help to reduce the number of delays and disruptions.

"We recognise that service reliability figures may not be perfect but they are shared openly.

"Our annual average of 98.5% punctuality and 2.5% cancellation reflects the fact that until the new infrastructure is in place, we are dealing with an aging system. The last time it was upgraded, the system was closed for three years."

"Our new Subway smartcard is free to customers who register."

stewart.paterson@eveningtimes.co.uk

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