Public Transit News and Current Happenings

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Tcmetro
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Tcmetro » July 29th, 2018, 11:45 am

Hudson used to have a Greyhound stop, but it was eliminated long ago. Currently there are no stops until Eau Claire.

DanPatchToget
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby DanPatchToget » July 29th, 2018, 1:15 pm

There's even a park & ride for carpoolers, its not in downtown but its a start-https://www.google.se/maps/place/WisDOT ... 92.7224784

Would it cost much for a few coach buses going down I-94 to Minneapolis via St. Paul? Would the Wisconsin state government be involved even if no money were required from them?

Tcmetro
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Tcmetro » July 29th, 2018, 1:35 pm

Doesn't having a park and ride at Manning Ave basically serve the Wisconsin market though? I doubt that anyone is going to put the money up, especially considering the adminstrative issues of having service in two different states.

DanPatchToget
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby DanPatchToget » July 30th, 2018, 12:48 am

Tcmetro wrote:
July 29th, 2018, 1:35 pm
Doesn't having a park and ride at Manning Ave basically serve the Wisconsin market though? I doubt that anyone is going to put the money up, especially considering the adminstrative issues of having service in two different states.
No because it’s not in Wisconsin. How many people are going to drive all the way to this park & ride and catch a bus when they might as well keep driving?

mamundsen
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby mamundsen » July 30th, 2018, 5:57 am

You’d be surprised. I use the p&r at Maplewood Mall and there are some WI plates. One time I parked next to a Tesla X with WI plates and happened to see the owner when we were headed home. I asked “why?” He said “I drive half my commute to get here, it’s nice to ride the bus for the 2nd half.”

DanPatchToget
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby DanPatchToget » July 30th, 2018, 6:51 am

mamundsen wrote:
July 30th, 2018, 5:57 am
You’d be surprised. I use the p&r at Maplewood Mall and there are some WI plates. One time I parked next to a Tesla X with WI plates and happened to see the owner when we were headed home. I asked “why?” He said “I drive half my commute to get here, it’s nice to ride the bus for the 2nd half.”
But wouldn’t it be nice if he didn’t have to drive all that distance? And people who can’t drive have better accessibility to transit without requiring someone to drive them to a station (or a long distance to a station)?

mamundsen
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby mamundsen » July 30th, 2018, 9:06 pm

Tcmetro wrote:
July 10th, 2018, 6:08 pm
There are going to be some changes to the State Fair service this year, mostly due to an operator shortage.

This piece from Citylab is a good read about the current state of affairs of the transit operator profession, as an aside:
https://www.citylab.com/transportation/ ... us/563555/

News of the service modifications come from a presentation for tomorrow's Metropolitan Council meeting:
https://metrocouncil.org/Council-Meetin ... ation.aspx

The reductions, namely, are:
  • 960 (Downtown Minneapolis - State Fair) service reduced to 30 minute frequencies (!)
  • Weekday express services starting at 9 am (instead of at 8 am)
  • Dunwoody express service starts at 12 noon
  • Oakdale service is weekend only
  • Newport service discontinued
Last year, 66 buses were used at AM peak and 80 at PM peak, so I wonder how well these (mostly AM) reductions will help with the bus operator shortage.

Last year's info: https://metrocouncil.org/Council-Meetin ... -Fair.aspx
Did we talk about the reduction in normal services???

https://www.metrotransit.org/service-ch ... eliability

This says it is about 1% of the overall schedule. Wonder if a slight recession will fix this in the next few years?

Tcmetro
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Tcmetro » July 30th, 2018, 9:32 pm

They just posted this today. Hopefully the August changes will retime the other trips to cover the gaps.

A recession would likely help this problem as more people would be unemployed, therefore willing to work for Metro Transit. Additionally, a recession would likely reduce transit demand, so not as much service would be needed.

DanPatchToget
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby DanPatchToget » July 31st, 2018, 1:27 am

So with all the bus route improvements along with BRT and ABRT routes planned are we going to have enough drivers by the time these lines open? Or are we going to have to pray autonomous buses are developed swiftly?

What about train drivers? Do we need to worry about that if/when Southwest and Bottineau open?

Tcmetro
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Tcmetro » July 31st, 2018, 4:47 am

Yes, this is a nationwide phenomena for bus driving and is also affecting a lot of other industries. Currently unemployment levels are at levels not seen in decades, but with tariffs and trade wars that could change quickly.

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Anondson
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Anondson » August 8th, 2018, 7:18 am

Estonia making public transit free.

https://www.positive.news/2018/society/ ... port-free/

MNdible
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby MNdible » August 8th, 2018, 8:52 am

Does anybody have a spitball take as to what it would cost to make Metro Transit free? Assuming, I suppose, that routes could stay at current levels, which almost certainly isn't true as demand would increase.

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VacantLuxuries
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby VacantLuxuries » August 8th, 2018, 9:09 am

According to this National Transit Database report from the FTA (page 40), making Metro Transit a free operation in 2016 would have cost $93 million in farebox recovery. That really doesn't take into account the lack of need to maintain ticket systems or sending Metro Transit Police on ticket checking runs, but it's a decent rough starting number for the conversation.

HuskyGrad
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby HuskyGrad » August 8th, 2018, 9:16 am

MNdible wrote:
August 8th, 2018, 8:52 am
Does anybody have a spitball take as to what it would cost to make Metro Transit free? Assuming, I suppose, that routes could stay at current levels, which almost certainly isn't true as demand would increase.
Based on Metro Transit's 2017 Facts, 25 percent of revenue is derived from fares. This would equate to approximately an additional $82.2 million subsidy. Which would be approximately an additional $27 per capita annually. For this figure I considered the urban population to be 3.1 million. However as you said demand would likely increase, so the cost would be some magnitude higher.

Tcmetro
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Tcmetro » August 8th, 2018, 8:51 pm

Maple Grove Transit is considering some route changes. Overall, MGT is one of the better performers in terms of subsidy per passenger among suburban express routes, but some routes are performing quite well and others poorly. The good performers are the 781, 785, and 789 which connect the large park and rides at the Maple Grove Transit Station on Hemlock Lane and the Maple Grove Parkway Station to Downtown Minneapolis to the U of M. The poor performers are the 780, 782, and 783, which connect small parking lots to Downtown Minneapolis. The 787 (midday park and ride shuttle) and 788 (local peak hour shuttle) are also poor performers.

What I would imagine is that MGT is going to look into some consolidation of routes, or perhaps a reorganization of some of the poorer performers to feed into the Maple Grove Transit Station where riders could transfer to the more frequent express lines. Supposedly, they are going to do a deeper look into ridership patterns for further discussion at the September meeting.

https://www.maplegrovemn.gov/files/3315 ... uly_31.pdf

nmin
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby nmin » August 9th, 2018, 6:51 am

When do you think MGT will start factoring the cost of operating those huge parking lots into the performance of those "high performing" routes? ;-)
Tcmetro wrote:
August 8th, 2018, 8:51 pm
Maple Grove Transit is considering some route changes. Overall, MGT is one of the better performers in terms of subsidy per passenger among suburban express routes, but some routes are performing quite well and others poorly. The good performers are the 781, 785, and 789 which connect the large park and rides at the Maple Grove Transit Station on Hemlock Lane and the Maple Grove Parkway Station to Downtown Minneapolis to the U of M. The poor performers are the 780, 782, and 783, which connect small parking lots to Downtown Minneapolis. The 787 (midday park and ride shuttle) and 788 (local peak hour shuttle) are also poor performers.

What I would imagine is that MGT is going to look into some consolidation of routes, or perhaps a reorganization of some of the poorer performers to feed into the Maple Grove Transit Station where riders could transfer to the more frequent express lines. Supposedly, they are going to do a deeper look into ridership patterns for further discussion at the September meeting.

https://www.maplegrovemn.gov/files/3315 ... uly_31.pdf

intercomnut
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby intercomnut » August 9th, 2018, 9:00 am

Fun fact: SW Transit is alleging that the Met Council is fudging Metro Transit’s and Maple Grove’s (operated by Metro Transit) efficiency numbers by using different methodologies to calculate them compared to SW, MVTA, and Plymouth. So maybe Maple Grove isn’t as efficient as they think?

https://swtransit.org/about/swt-commiss ... es#page=36

Multimodal
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Multimodal » August 9th, 2018, 9:18 am

I don’t know the history of how we got all these suburban “transit systems” (express commuter buses, basically, seemingly to keep out “urban” people) in addition to Metro Transit… but in the age of more people wanting to live closer to downtown, and more low-wage jobs moving to the suburbs & exurbs, isn’t it time we had an integrated transportation network for the entire Twin Cities?

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VacantLuxuries
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby VacantLuxuries » August 9th, 2018, 9:25 am

It basically boils down to the bougie suburbs didn't want to have to pay for the full transit system, but they still wanted express buses to downtown. I don't imagine much has changed for those communities, at least at the decision making level.

MNdible
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby MNdible » August 9th, 2018, 9:31 am

My understanding is that's not quite correct -- they're still paying for their share of the full transit system (all of the transit money goes into the same pot), but they now have control over how their slice of that money gets spent.


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