We have 30 Days of Biking; why not 30 Days of Transit?

Roads - Rails - Sidewalks - Bikeways
US Bank Plaza
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We have 30 Days of Biking; why not 30 Days of Transit?

Postby Multimodal » December 24th, 2018, 9:31 am

You’ve probably heard about the worldwide phenomenon called 30 Days of Biking. It was started in Mpls by Patrick Stephenson and went viral worldwide. So why not 30 Days of Transit? Encourage people to dip their toes in transit, and let them learn it can be fun, easy, convenient, & comfortable. Depending on where you live, of course.

Perhaps this could be a Streets.MN initiative in a warm weather month (May)? Here is how we could sell it to people (these are rough ideas off the top of my head):

1. Find your local transit agency: search in your web browser and/or get their app in the App Store.
2. Buy a 30-day (or 1-month) transit pass. Or just start out with a 1-week, weekend, or all-day pass. Find out if you can pay by swiping your phone or using an app, if you want. Find out if your system has different charges for different times of day or week (rush hour or weekend rates, for example).
3. Open up Apple or Google Maps, enter Transit mode, and zoom/pan to find the nearest bus stop. If the nearest stop is > 1/4 mile, bike there and figure out where to safely park your bike while you’re on transit. Or take a taxi or Uber/Lyft. Or rent a bike or scooter, if these are available where you live.
4. Find out what accommodations your transit system has for walkers, wheelchairs, and people with limited sight or hearing, if you need any of these services.

(Could volunteers create short, 30-second to 1-minute videos that demonstrate doing some of these things?)

Things you can do:
1. Go to a sporting event, major event, farmers’ market (bring a reusable bag or two), street fair, food trucks, open air concert. Isn’t it great that you don’t have to search for or pay for parking?!
2. Go to a library, museum, monument, bridge, skyscraper, historical site
3. Go to a church, synagogue, temple, mosque; if it’s not your religion (or you don’t have one), learn something about it.
4. Meet friends or neighbors for coffee, breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert
5. Meet friends or travel with neighbors to a bar, brewery, distillery, tea shop, coffee roaster, or juice bar
6. Go to a large, regional park, or bike trail or hiking path. When you get there, take a hike, row a boat, ride a bike, or just walk around & enjoy the scenery
7. Go to yoga, the gym, or meditation
8. Bring a picnic to a concert or movie in a park or along a river
9. On a rainy day, go to a movie, show, concert
10. Invite your neighbors, meet friends & family somewhere (food, fun, shopping, exercise)
11. Bring a reusable bag, then shop for dinner, whether that means buying raw ingredients & cooking them yourself, or buying a ready-made salad or frozen pizza to take home
12. Take transit to get your hair styled or cut, go to a doctor or dentist visit, buy a lightbulb, or any other errand you need to accomplish
13. Learn how to use a transfer (do you need to ask for one when departing the bus? How long does it last? Can you use it for light rail or a trolley or ferry?)
14. Can you get to work or school on transit, with transfers?
15. Do you have a bike? Any old bike? Ask your driver how to put your bike on the front of the bus, if your system allows it (or inside). Don’t forget a bike lock for when you get to your ultimate destination.
16. Add your favorite routes to your transit app or maps app, so they are handy to look up and you get alerts about delays or construction.
17. Forget about cumbersome paper transit route maps! Ask your phone’s assistant (“Hey, Siri…”, “OK, Google…”) how to get somewhere by transit. You’d be surprised how easy it is.
18. Put your adventures on social media. Tweet about your ride today. Instagram the cool new cafe you found. Facebook your friends with a selfie on the train. Write about it for Streets.MN.
19. Look around you when traveling on transit. Do you suddenly notice things that you didn’t notice when driving? Why is that? Can you discover a lot more about your city—places to go, shop, eat, have fun, exercise, play, do errands—when on transit compared to driving?
20. When you get off the bus, what’s it like walking past a bunch of shops vs. walking past a big box store or parking lot? What about walking past a park or green space? How do you feel around each of these places?
21. Get on the bus, and go “x” number of stops without knowing the destinations (where “x” is 5 or 8 or whatever). What’s there? What kind of days would you go there? Or just ride the bus until something catches your eye.
22. The next day, do the same thing in the opposite direction.
23. Is there something you like or dislike about transit where you are? Are there enough transit lines? Do the stops have comfortable seating or covered areas? Is the waiting time for transit reasonable? Do the trains run at night or when you have to get to your job or school? Email your city’s transportation commission and city council, and your region’s planning organization (“Met Council”, etc.) and tell them what’s missing and what you like about the system.
24. Get local high school kids involved (is there a climate change or sustainability group?). Get local organizations involved: Sierra Club chapter, biking clubs, get bike shops‘ group rides to encourage people getting their bikes there via transit, community men’s or women’s clubs or rotary clubs.
25. By the end of the month, can you do most things without your car? Why or why not?

City Center
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Re: We have 30 Days of Biking; why not 30 Days of Transit?

Postby COLSLAW5 » December 24th, 2018, 1:55 pm

Love this idea. Just some other apps to add to the list would be the Transit App or CityMapper. Citymapper doesnt work in the twin cities but both of these apps live track the buses giving you more up to date timing and allow for more confidence in reaching your bus on time.

Landmark Center
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Re: We have 30 Days of Biking; why not 30 Days of Transit?

Postby Vagueperson » December 25th, 2018, 2:43 pm

A couple of big differences I see:
- Bicycling can be joyriding, not as likely with the bus
- In my city (St. Paul) it is simply time-prohibitive to use transit for many of these errands. Bicycle rides are almost always quicker and better match your own schedule
- A poor network and low frequency make trips so much more difficult if they don't involve a downtown destination or origin

US Bank Plaza
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Joined: March 4th, 2016, 7:55 am
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Re: We have 30 Days of Biking; why not 30 Days of Transit?

Postby Multimodal » December 30th, 2018, 6:51 am

Thank you for your feedback, Colslaw5 & Vagueperson. You make good points that I will address soon.

For now, I just want to link to this article, including item #38 which talks about walking & transit, to jog my memory about walking & transit when I took the bus to Uptown a few weeks ago, and how good it made me feel:

https://www.fastcompany.com/3062989/50- ... le-streets

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Joined: June 19th, 2012, 5:12 pm

Re: We have 30 Days of Biking; why not 30 Days of Transit?

Postby eazydp » January 17th, 2019, 10:13 pm

As a parent, take your kids! They love riding the bus or the train. It's super exciting for them and others on the bus/train love it too. Plus you're molding a future multi-modal champion.

I fully agree that a sporting event (or similar major event) is one of the best motivators to attempt transit for those who aren't experienced. I used to be a regular bus commuter, I think I did at least an entire year either biking or busing to work. Due to a very poor commute options, I usually drive or bike nowadays.

Our transit network allows great access to all of the major sporting venues now, which is great. This year I've done Target Field, TCF Bank Stadium, US Bank Stadium, the Xcel Center and Williams arena via transit. I find myself biking or driving to the reliable back bones (LRT or BRT), so I think a multi-modal approach should be encourage too. I do have a bus line which can connect me near by, but the frequency is too low.

Google maps is key to success in route planning, so helpful. Especially to know when to exit for a transfer.

Wells Fargo Center
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Re: We have 30 Days of Biking; why not 30 Days of Transit?

Postby mamundsen » January 20th, 2019, 10:41 am

I’ve found that my Go To Card and google maps having transit has increased my comfort with transit. I suggest using both to everyone. The hardest part can be the last mile.

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