BART promotes from within for new general manager

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BART board of directors on Thursday announced that BART Deputy General Manager Robert Powers will serve as the agency's new general manager, replacing Grace Crunican. 

BART chose to promote internally and says aside from Powers' seven-year experience with the agency, he's worked in the public transportation industry for over 20 years. 

Powers plans to launch a "listening tour" to hear concerns and suggestions from riders and employees. 

"Our low customer satisfaction numbers are unacceptable. We can do better. We will do better, and we must do better," he said. 

He wants to increase customer satisfaction on all fronts. 

"A new fleet car replacement program, a new train control system, rebuilding our infrastructure, reducing crowding, increasing service and a fully staffed BART Police Department," Powell said. 

To deal with the quality of life complaints, BART will expand the successful elevator attendant program from the Civic Center and Powell Street stations to also include the Montgomery and Embarcadero stations.

Customers say they appreciate the friendliness and security the attendants provide. BART says there is a virtual elimination in inappropriate behavior in the elevators.