Monday, July 24, 2017

PVTA: Northampton Academy of Music

Being a big hub for the PVTA, one would imagine that Northampton would have a relatively substantial terminal. No? How about a moderately substantial terminal? A single shelter, huh? Well...okay, that works too...

Yeah, it's basically just a shelter, and a dingy one at that. I kinda hate waiting in there, what with the garbage everywhere and the pungent stench. Inside, there's a map with route schedules and a screen that provides real-time information. Finally, there are some newspaper boxes outside the shelter.

A rather nice street clock with the plaza behind it.
I'm not really sure if this counts as the "station" or not, but the shelter is located next to a plaza where a lot of people choose to wait for the bus. It has folding chairs and some rather nice foliage - it seems like it would be a nice place to wait. However, it seems to attract some...questionable people. Finally, behind the shelter, there are some bike racks, a wastebasket, and a recycling bin.

PVTA Station: Northampton Academy of Music

Ridership: Northampton is one of the PVTA's principal hubs, so this place usually sees a good amount of people waiting for the bus. The routes serving Northampton aren't that busy aside from the B43 and the B48, but the point is that people definitely use this stop.

Pros: It definitely provides some basic amenities - the bike racks are convenient and the real-time information is a nice touch. The plaza has the potential to be nice, but it's usually...not.

Cons: This just isn't a great place to wait for the bus. Everything feels dingy and dirty, and every time I visit it I think I like it less and less. This is a hard one to express in words, but it's just...not a pleasant place to wait at.

Nearby and Noteworthy: Northampton is a lovely town. It's like a combination of Cambridge and Portland, OR - it has the weirdness and attitudes of both cities, the northeastern charm of Cambridge, and the rebellious spirit of Portland. The downtown is really walkable, with lots of unique and interesting businesses. I love it!

Final Verdict: 4/10
When I first went to this place, I was alright with settling for a 5. However, I've done a lot of riding since then (believe me, I have so many PVTA reviews to do), and upon subsequent visits to this place, my rating has dropped to a 4. I think you have to actually go and wait there to understand what I mean when I say it's not a pleasant place to wait, but...yeah, it's not.

Latest MBTA News: Service Updates


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