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Delta expands BWI-NYC service

[This post has been updated]

Delta Air Lines is expanding its daily nonstop service between Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport and New York City, adding an additional round trip to JFK effective Sept. 7.

Delta announced the change as part of an expansion of service in the international and domestic market.


The airline is also adding three additional trips between Richmond and New York. The expanded service includes two additional flights between Richmond International Airport and LaGuardia Airport, and one additional flight between the Richmond airport and John F. Kennedy International Airport.

Delta has been trying to get more slots at LaGuardia. Last year, US Airways agreed to trade 140 slots at New York's LaGuardia Airport for 42 slots at Reagan National owned by Delta. Last week the Department of Transportation said it would approve the deal only if the airlines gave up 14 slots at National and 20 slots at LaGuardia in a blind auction to increase competition. Delta and US Airways said they plan to appeal that decision.

-- Associated Press and staff reports

By Michael Bolden  |  May 11, 2010; 10:29 AM ET
Categories:  Airports  
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Comments

This post is useless and further clutters this blog. This blog used to be about DC area transportation issues. However, when there are multiple postings per day they get pushed to the bottom then eventually off this page all together.

Posted by: member8 | May 11, 2010 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Agreed, member8.

Posted by: thetan | May 11, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

This post may be marginally useful now, as it has been updated from Richmond to BWI.

Posted by: member8 | May 11, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Agreed, member8. This type of post is better suited for a travel blog. I can understand posting information about flight delays due to the Iceland volcanoe, snowstorms, tornadoes, local airport closures, etc because those can directly impact travel. Honestly I am starting to dislike this blog more and more for all the insignificant posts that are made that are only relevent for an hour or two. Posts such as "Pedestrian struck at 11th and H St" should be removed once the situation is resolved. What good is this information if there are no longer delays related to it.

This blog used to contain much more interesting and relevent posts that sparked discussion amoung the readers. Now those posts are so frequently pushed to the bottom of the page or off the page entirely with this dribble.

Posted by: UMDTerpsGirl | May 11, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Thank you all for the feedback. We appreciate hearing how things are working or not working, especially as we try to serve the diverse transportation needs and interests of people who visit the blog.

One general comment: We do not unpublish items in our bid to be as transparent as possible in what we do, and the information on traffic incidents, especially when they cause delays are useful to many, even if they have a short shelf life.

One general question: How do you all access the blog? Do you have the page bookmarked and come directly to it?

Thanks for your input.

Michael Bolden
Development &
Transportation Editor

Posted by: Michael Bolden | May 11, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

I either come to it off of the Local page (using the link next to Transportation in the top-middle of the page) or from the main WaPo page (using the link in the box on the right hand side of the page, box also contains a link to the Capital Weather Gang's blog).

I think formatting could help to prevent things being pushed off the page. Posts with multiple pictures should only display one picture and the rest should be after the jump. The daily morning traffic post often stretches quite long. That post should only list a paragraph or two and the rest should be after the jump.

I guess in general I see this blog as being a source of information but also an opportunity for discussion amoung readers about relevent transportation issues, as well as being a forum to start a discussion. Many of the posts just seem suited better elsewhere (info about airlines and Amtrack, unless specifically about delays, should be on a travel blog). Some of general daily traffic issues also seem like they should just be on the traffic page. I have also noticed a lot of redundancy with some of the other WaPo blogs (Breaking News Blog and Crime Watch Blog specifically). The UPS truck crashing into the Hirshorn and the SUV hitting a pedestrian in front of a mall yesterday were both covered by the Breaking News Blog and I don't think really relate to transportation. Unless the incident is resulting in delays or really isn't posted anywhere else on the WaPo site, I think it can be left off of the Get There Blog. Just some general ideas from a daily reader.

Posted by: UMDTerpsGirl | May 11, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

I just click the orange cones on the Local homepage.

I echo the concerns of UMDTerpsGirl and member8. I believe the blog should be split into two. One piece will cover local transportation issues that affect DC area residents on a regular basis (both short and long-term). I do not mind posts like "ped crash at 11th and H", but I would suggest no more than 2 per day (one for each rush hour) and update the posts as new information becomes available. I'd only make exceptions to the 2 per day rule of thumb if there is a major event that occurs that will affect travel and thus is deserving of its own thread. Otherwise, I would like to see posts about upcoming construction projects, new preliminary ideas, and other issues that affect transportation in the DC area.

The other section or blog should be a travel blog. That is where posts about things that do not affect DC area commuters can be posted, such as new air service from JFK to Richmond, Amtrak's nationwide on-time stats, etc. In general, these are topics that are either not-specific to the DC area, or are topics that are specific to the DC area but don't affect regular commuters (such as new air service from BWI....that is relevant to the DC area but the majority of us do not fly on a regular basis). Exceptions might be posts around the summer getaway season and holidays, where you have a lot of local people hitting the roads, rails, and airports to get to faraway destinations...those could go in the "local" blog.

Two problems I have with the current setup where local and non-local posts mix in the same blog:

1) Stuff gets pushed off the bottom of the page too quickly. The Get There blog was not one of the most active blogs on WaPo.com, but there has always been a core group of people that share valuable information amongst each other and with the transportation staff via this blog, and sometimes "hot topics" remain active for a few days. I can't speak for everyone else, but it makes me a lot less likely to comment on an old thread if I have to click down deep into the archives to find it.

2) The Get There blog is accessed primarily from the Local page, meaning the audience is likely mostly DC area residents. So a post about new air service from Richmond isn't likely to catch the Richmond audience who would be much more likely to access it from the National homepage. My idea is that the DC area transportation blog be accessible from the local page, and the everywhere travel blog be accessible from the national page to gain a national audience.

Posted by: thetan | May 11, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

I access the page directly via
http://voices.washingtonpost.com/getthere

I like the discussion aspect of the site, however, once a topic gets pushed off the main page, discussion is pretty much over.

Sometimes a hot topic will just disappear. I know that you can access it via the "Archives" but that is not user friendly. Maybe a "Next Page" link at the bottom would be helpful.

Posted by: yetanotherpassword | May 11, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

I've waited a while to comment on this because I had various thoughts I was trying to organize mentally before doing so. I am writing my comments in MS Word and will paste them in via a series of comments.

First, as to how we access this blog, I have it bookmarked and it's a daily stop. Since I currently work out of my home office there have been days where I've just left it running in a browser tab that I forgot to close.

Second, regarding thetan's suggestion about a travel blog: I recall the Post's Travel section used to have a blog and I believe it was discontinued due to money issues with the well-documented financial crunch hitting newspapers these days. Airline-related posts, or especially the post about the TSA agent with the small willy who beat up his colleague, seem to be more suited to the Travel section than to a commuter blog (more on which momentarily), but since the Travel section blog was shut down I'm not sure where those posts ought to go now. They do not seem to impact daily commuting. Stuff like Amtrak DOES impact commuting, I think, and is legitimate content here, given how many people in the DC business community go back and forth to New York on any given weekday for business. (A former colleague of mine took the Acela roundtrip to Penn Station an average of three times a week for several years.)

I think thetan's comment about how topics sometimes stay viable for several days and UMDGirl's comment about discussion of transportation issues are both good points, and in thinking about their comments I found myself asking what the focus of this blog is: Is it a commuting blog or is it a traffic blog? While of course there is overlap between the two insofar as traffic is an inherent part of, and has a huge impact on, commuting, I think there is a distinction to be made as well in that in my mind "traffic" is the immediate and concrete (e.g., I-395 backed up at Shirlington because idiot tried to cross the road on foot and got pancaked) where as "commuting" is a more long-term and theoretical issue (e.g., I-66 backed up every day at Beltway and you want to analyze why that is and how to fix it). In other words, "traffic" affects you in the short term because traffic varies from day to day and even at various times across the same day, whereas "commuting" is something you deal with over time and something with which you learn to adapt. For example, I used to "commute" from Kingstowne to downtown near Metro Center, and the daily "traffic" would determine which route I used, what time I left, etc.

More in a moment.

Posted by: 1995hoo | May 11, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

(continuing from prior comment)

That means that "traffic" matters in many ways have a shorter shelf life than "commuting" matters. I thought yesterday's topic about Gov. McDonnell's proposal for tolls on I-95 was an interesting "commuting" topic (yes, it was about Southside Virginia, but the concept is one that could easily be pushed to other roads throughout the Commonwealth) and was one that typically would have attracted ongoing debate and discussion among the core readers of the Get There blog. I know thetan and I surely would have had more to say. (While I have never met him personally, I've encountered thetan's comments here, on WTOP's site, and in misc.transport.road, and his knowledge and understanding of these sorts of issues is impressive.) Something like the fire engulfing the bus in Arlington is a short-term topic, for the most part: A bus catches on fire, we all say, "D'oh, does that affect my route?," and we move on. Certainly the "traffic" information is important in the here and now, but it has a short shelf life except in certain cases like last year's Red Line crash or situations where you have advance warning of a big Metro schemozzle (switch replacement at Rosslyn, for example) or a major road closing (nightly steel beam hoisting in Springfield, for example). To cite something that has appeared on the blog while I am typing this, I think the Barnes Dance discussion is an IDEAL "Get There" topic that could support ongoing debate, especially as we observe whether and how well it works in practice. In that vein the Barnes Dance discussion probably ought to be revisited in the fall when the Capitals start playing again, as Phone Booth events are probably when that area is busiest.

Another follow-up to come shortly.

Posted by: 1995hoo | May 11, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

(continued again)

I guess where I am going with these thoughts is that Dr. Gridlock's column is first and foremost a well-done commuting column, especially when the Sunday Commuter Page is added to it. To me "commuting" discussion involves more overarching discussion and theory as compared to the immediacy of traffic news. I've always thought of the Get There blog as being a natural outgrowth of the Dr. Gridlock column that functions as a way of overcoming the space limitations inherent in a twice-weekly column. Back when Ron Shaffer first started the column in the 1980s (when it was in the old "Metro 2" section), the column didn't focus solely on reader letters. He often spent the first half of the column talking about a commuting issue. I recall several columns being devoted to intersection design and traffic lights, for example (Mr. Shaffer hated the ugly span wire that Virginia has long favored as a way of hanging traffic lights). Over the years the column shifted away from that, and I always thought the Get There blog was a great return to that sort of discussion that also allowed for a more immediate form of letter-writing via reader comments. Put differently, some of us routinely have things to say about these topics, but a newspaper columnist quite rightly cannot allow a few readers' comments to dominate what he runs in the paper. It would lack credibility and would annoy other readers. The blog format is a great solution to that. I suppose I am proudly a roadgeek in that I enjoy the discussion about roundabouts, or about how the HOT lanes should work, or bike lane design, or VDOT's experimental pavement markings, etc., and when these sorts of posts get pushed off the front page of the blog within half a day I think something is lost.

One more follow-up in a few minutes.

Posted by: 1995hoo | May 11, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Final comment for now:

I don't know if there is an easy solution to balancing the desire to post up-to-date news with the desire to allow for in-depth discussion. I suppose the question in my mind is then whether it is viable or desirable to attempt to operate a blog as a "traffic ticker," for lack of a better word ("ticker" in the sense of the out-of-town scoreboard you see at the bottom of the screen when you watch sports on TV), if doing so pushes content off so quickly that it becomes impossible for discussion to get started. thetan has pointed out how content is getting pushed off the bottom of the front page of the blog very quickly these days, and I do think something gets lost when that happens because the design of the Post's blogs requires you to make multiple clicks to try to find the archived content. I wish there were some easier way to access all of the current week's posting. Perhaps instead of "Full Archive" the Post could redesign the blog software so that it says "This Week's Full Content" and it leads you to the summary page for the current week that you now access via the "Full Archive" page. Odds are that someone going to "Full Archive" is probably looking for something fairly recent.

Posted by: 1995hoo | May 11, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Bravo for the long comment, hoo.

Posted by: yetanotherpassword | May 11, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

"Bravo for the long comment, hoo."

Thanks. I hate having to break up the comment like that, but the Post's blog software doesn't let long comments through. It says it's being "held for approval" by the moderator, and my experience is that when that happens the comment will not show up. So now I break up long comments. (I know thetan has sometimes done the same.) This one just happened to be the longest one I've had reason to write!

Posted by: 1995hoo | May 12, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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