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New York State Thruway

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storm2k:

--- Quote from: seicer on November 06, 2023, 03:37:25 PM ---I've not had an issue with NYSTA tags but I don't travel on it that often anymore. Customer service was atrocious and it seemed like they had outsourced it. I similarly didn't have an issue with the WVTPA tags but customer service was a bit better - and local.

--- End quote ---

Pretty par for the course, unfortunately. The NJ Service Center is an absolute pain to deal with in most any regard, and they're not outsourced the last time I checked, and they are in Newark.

kalvado:

--- Quote from: kalvado on November 11, 2023, 06:09:00 PM ---
--- Quote from: Jim on November 11, 2023, 05:42:53 PM ---How is it so hard for the Thruway and so easy for everyone else?  On my business trip November 2-5 trip to South Carolina, for which I'd like to get the tolls posted so I can submit my travel for reimbursement in one shot, no sign of my Thruway tolls on my account but NJTP, GSP, DMB, Bay Bridge, and US 301 in Delaware all posted by the next day.  You'd think the agency that issued my tag would be faster.  Looks like NYT tolls from my trip in mid-October to NYC (which I was in no rush to see posted since it wasn't business) took 29 days to post.  That's one mighty slow computer system they've got there...

--- End quote ---
Computer... I wouldn't be surprised if there is some manual review process that slows things down. Just to keep toll-takers employed.

--- End quote ---
Just got an ezpass monthly statement with "we experienced a delay" message and a longest processing time of 39 days.
Last trip was posted next day, so maybe they worked out the issue.

vdeane:
I was over at the Schuyler service area today (the "level 1" service area).  It's interesting.  The bathrooms are the same size as the base "level 2" service areas (the small ones), but aren't split, so all six stalls are in the same place.  There's also plenty of seating (relative to its size), which is again interesting because the convenience store has no true food items (not even subs/pizza/hot dogs like they do at the other service areas) and Dunkin doesn't have much in the way of food either.  Basically, it's a good place for a bathroom break, since the lack of food options keeps it lightly patronized while the bathrooms are the same size as at the next size up service area (and much better laid out).

webny99:

--- Quote from: vdeane on November 22, 2023, 08:22:03 PM ---I was over at the Schuyler service area today (the "level 1" service area).  It's interesting.  The bathrooms are the same size as the base "level 2" service areas (the small ones), but aren't split, so all six stalls are in the same place.  There's also plenty of seating (relative to its size), which is again interesting because the convenience store has no true food items (not even subs/pizza/hot dogs like they do at the other service areas) and Dunkin doesn't have much in the way of food either.  Basically, it's a good place for a bathroom break, since the lack of food options keeps it lightly patronized while the bathrooms are the same size as at the next size up service area (and much better laid out).

--- End quote ---

Interesting. I'm still really curious about the data that was used to determine which areas got which level service area (guide here for reference). Schuyler is one that makes sense, since Iroquois is only 17 miles away (quite close by Thruway standards) and some of the Mohawk Valley ones in general I'd expect to be more lightly used.

But I can't figure out any rhyme or reason to the levels between Rochester and Utica, especially WB. Chittenango, the only WB area between Utica and Syracuse, is only a level 2, and therefore Warners is the only service area above a level 2 between Rochester and Utica. You'd think anyone coming to/from the Syracuse area would be more likely to stop at Junius Ponds or Seneca, yet those are both only level 2. EB makes a little more sense with Clifton Springs being level 3 and Oneida being level 2A, but then after Oneida there's nothing above a level 2 until Albany; it seems like either Mohawk or Guilderland (or maybe both) should be level 2A.

I've been perusing the Google reviews on the areas that have reopened, and the difference in level 2 reviews vs. level 2A/2B/3 reviews is vast. The small ones are really not well liked, with reviews taking a big downturn after the reopenings, while the larger ones have been mixed but more positive overall. Junius Ponds and Chittenango in particular seem to be despised - but there again, Warners is the only 2A between Utica and Rochester and it's currently closed, so with those two being as small as they are, there's going to be some overcrowding issues until Warners reopens.

vdeane:
^ And on a more meta level, the whole level scheme is kinda hokey.  I think I get where they're going with it (with the A and B referring to additional amenities with the number being the base), but 2A and 2B have more common with everything level 3 than with the base level 2 (hence why I use "level 3" to refer to everything above the base level 2).  And if we're getting technical, maybe Chittenango should actually be "level 1A" given that CFA is closed on Sundays, leaving it with just Starbucks one day out of every week.

As for the distribution, there seems to be a thought of "bigger service areas leaving a metro area, smaller ones further into the journey" for whatever reason.  It's not even a recent thought, given that Ardsley exists and has no SB counterpart.  This is visible even in NYSDOT rest areas; see Clifton Park (no SB counterpart) and the Adirondack Welcome Center (bigger and more modern than Glens Falls SB).

Just checked the project page, and they've updated the reopening dates for all of them.  Looks like they hit a MASSIVE delay at some point, as the renovations went from opening early next year to the end of next year, and Angola was pushed back to 2025 (many of the others slipped by a quarter or two as well).  So much for having the bulk of the system back online for the summer travel season next year.

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