Commuting Gets its Close-Up

The Real Estate section of the NY Times has kicked off a month-long feature that sees the reporter try out different commutes from different corners of the Metro area. It feels a bit like Nick Paumgarten’s seminal New Yorker story on commuting — breaking down the trade-off of having a sizeable home and a mostly unpalatable schlep to work versus living in a cardboard box and being able to walk to work. But it thus far only scratches of the surface of a complex topic that Paumgarten truly nailed.  

To be honest, there’s sort of a snooty ‘I’m slumming it’ tone to the Times feature, as in, ‘Today, I ride the subway with laborers, minorities, and maybe even a homeless man to find out how 98% of the city gets around each day.”

To wit:

To explore this phenomenon, we are embarking on a mission. For the month of January, we will ride to and from work with some of the New York area’s commuting millions.

Most of us millions don’t really see it as a “mission.” We’re just going to work.

One interesting factoid reporter Billie Cohen unearths: Nearly 40% of all U.S. “transit” commuters hail in the New York Metro area. Furthermore, 25% of area residents take “transit” to get to work; Chicago is second with 11.5%.

This entry was posted in Billie Cohen, Nick Paumgarten. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Commuting Gets its Close-Up

  1. Toorock says:

    I always kind of liked music from the Chicago Transit Authority (before they became just “Chicago”). I’m pretty sure that is what you are talking about here.

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