With Metro-North service still only running at 50 percent of normal capacity, Connecticut commuters are entering a second week of delays and challenges getting to work. Being a regular Metro-North commuter frequently calls for ingenuity. Last week's electrical failure left many searching once again for a Plan B.
Some simply left earlier to brave the limited rail and bus service -- and reported commutes of up to three hours as a result. Others took to the roads, with tailbacks of more than 15 miles at rush hour on I-95. For those that can telecommute, staying home is often a temporary option. Many of those who were able to do that at the end of last week could find themselves required to return to the office Monday.
One company, Regus, which provides flexible office space at several place along the New Haven line, is offering free refuge to anyone who can show a Metro-North pass. "We open up our business lounges, which is a shared working environment," said Connecticut area director Robert Dawson, "so people are allowed to come in, connect, have Internet; they can have free coffee, tea or water. We have a la carte service if they need to have a video conference, they need to rent a meeting room, they need to scan or make a copy -- all of those things are available." For those that opted to stay with friends or in a hotel nearer to their workplace, it could be a long haul. Metro-North is projecting service will not be back to normal until October 8.