The D.C. region’s Metro is the nation’s second-busiest subway system at the “young” age of 40. Despite its youth, problems in the transit system are a frequent occurrence.

On top of that, continued service disruptions, maintenance and safety lapses have combined to make riding the Metro a less-than-cheerful experience for commuters and tourists.

An investigation by The Post mapped out how the rail system got itself into such a chaotic and messy situation. In uncovering the factors that led to the decline of the Metro, we opened up the conversation and polled readers on how often they encountered problems with the system, their biggest problem with Metro and ideas on how to fix it.

Of the hundreds of responses to the story, in addition to the hundreds who participated in The Post’s polls, here’s what a few of you had to say:

“It might be much better to turn it over to the private sector.”

I do believe that for so long we have heard nothing but stories of corruption, graft and union blackmail from DC. With the kind of reputation the city has, it might be much better to turn it over to the private sector. In just about any country, the same bit of infrastructure run by government is more costly, less efficient than those done privately. Government employees and agencies have their own motivations.

— CH-ican posted in The Washington Post’s comments section.

“It is easy to blame Metro officials for mismanagement when all goes wrong; however, the real culprits are our elected officials.”

This is a classic example of the failed policies of those who advocate small government and low taxes. Such policies result in a profound loss of the revenues needed to maintain critical infrastructure, as well as to provide for good school. Unfortunately, this dire situation is made even worse by the high density development projects that have been built — or are slated to be built — at or near an antiquated and crumbling Metro transit system. It is easy to blame Metro officials for mismanagement when all goes wrong; however, the real culprits are our elected officials — the politicians who failed — and continue to fail — the need to provide adequate revenue to maintain our crumbling infrastructure of which Metro is but one example. There is no free lunch. Think about that the next time someone advocates giving more tax breaks to businesses. … Think about this before the Purple Line [is built].

— P.J. Baker posted in The Washington Post’s comments section.

“Stop providing service if you can’t do it right. Congress will soon get the message.”

WMATA To-Do list: #1, Get rid of apathetic and underperforming employees; broken turnstiles go unlabeled and escalators don’t get their directions switched as employees in their kiosks play games on their phones #2, Clean up the stations and tracks, there’s unused equipment and trash everywhere. A seemingly new fire extinguisher has been leaning on a fence just before the Shady Grove station for months feet away from once new light-alls that have been rusting away for years. #3, Stop providing service if you can’t do it right. Congress will soon get the message.

— Dominic Russoli posted in The Washington Post’s comments section.

What ideas do you have to fix the Metro? Share your thoughts in the comments below, or on The Post’s Facebook page.