Public Transit News / Current Events (MN only)

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HiawathaGuy
Wells Fargo Center
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby HiawathaGuy » February 11th, 2019, 5:38 pm

alexschief wrote:
February 11th, 2019, 4:42 pm
Official ridership numbers are up....
Great assessment, thanks for sharing!
But I especially loved this slip:
alexschief wrote:
February 11th, 2019, 4:42 pm
Fixing the awful issues at Snelling and at 280 where the Green Line hits stoplights would be a great step for St. Paul, Ramsey County, and PennDOT to show some positive intentions toward transit.
;)

MNdible
is great.
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby MNdible » February 11th, 2019, 6:15 pm

alexschief wrote:
February 11th, 2019, 4:42 pm
(2) Just 11.8% of rides are for shopping, appointments. This looks like a huge mismatch to me, and a real area for growth for Metro Transit, because these trips make up a greater percentage of the average person's trips than the agency serves. These types of trips are theoretically good for transit but people aren't riding.
I'm going to disagree with you here. These trips are not good for transit -- and riders of choice (meaning transit riders who have a car, or who are comfortable biking to shopping, or who are financially willing to pay for an Uber) are not going to use it.

Korh
Nicollet Mall
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Korh » February 11th, 2019, 6:50 pm

decided to crunch some numbers a little and try to estimate how much non-bus modes (lRT, BRT, etc) make up Metro's total ridership numbers:
  • 2014: 19.8%
  • 2015: 27.6%
  • 2016: 29.7%
  • 2017: 32.0%
  • 2018: 34.0%
I know its no where close to painting an accurate picture, but if the ~2% increase per year that's being holding true for the last 4 years remains (plus the added bonus of the blue and green line extensions). I wouldn't be surprised by 2025 if not sooner, 50% of Metros total ridership will be from a combination of LRT, BRT, aBRT, and commuter rail.

phop
Nicollet Mall
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby phop » February 11th, 2019, 7:14 pm

Korh wrote:
February 11th, 2019, 6:50 pm
decided to crunch some numbers a little and try to estimate how much non-bus modes (lRT, BRT, etc) make up Metro's total ridership numbers:
  • 2014: 19.8%
  • 2015: 27.6%
  • 2016: 29.7%
  • 2017: 32.0%
  • 2018: 34.0%
I know its no where close to painting an accurate picture, but if the ~2% increase per year that's being holding true for the last 4 years remains (plus the added bonus of the blue and green line extensions). I wouldn't be surprised by 2025 if not sooner, 50% of Metros total ridership will be from a combination of LRT, BRT, aBRT, and commuter rail.
I'd say this is almost a given, as long as the aBRT implementation schedules don't get bogged down. Local bus numbers will see big declines as B, C, D and E come online since the routes being upgraded/replaced have some of the largest riderships within the local system.

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Qhaberl
Foshay Tower
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Qhaberl » February 11th, 2019, 7:19 pm

alexschief wrote:Official ridership numbers are up. They more or less continue the trend of the last couple years. The region's investments in high-capacity, high-frequency, congestion-light service are paying off with consistent, year-over-year ridership gains. However, local bus ridership is falling which is being mostly blamed on cheap gas, VC subsidized ridesharing, and uniquely in MSP this year, a recent fare hike.

I think Metro Transit is more or less on top of this. As discussed a page ago, the agency is increasing frequency and increasing stop spacing on a widening number of routes, which is a smart, low-cost, low-time way to improve service.

I also think the Met Council and Metro Transit can probably expect jumps in ridership with a number of big investments coming online in the next couple years that will provide the kind of quality service that is still gaining riders. Obviously, the agency is ramping up aBRT projects, although (as I've written a lot) I would like to see them revise the corridor approach from the 2012 study into a network approach that will position aBRT service as the metro's flagship. The Orange Line looks like the region's best hBRT project to me. The Green Line Extension should create some entirely new transit markets.

But while the agencies are doing pretty good work in identifying investments, some of the biggest potential ridership gains are out of their hands. Minneapolis has also made an explicit goal of reducing VMT, which will necessarily involve transit to achieve. They're also about to allow much more of the city to become more transit-friendly density, and are clearly mulling whether to allocate more road space for buses, which would be huge. Hopefully we'll see similar interest from St. Paul, although it'll naturally happen three to five years after Minneapolis. Fixing the awful issues at Snelling and at 280 where the Green Line hits stoplights would be a great step for St. Paul, Ramsey County, and PennDOT to show some positive intentions toward transit.

On a more granular level, I'm interested in the "Who Rides" infographic produced by Metro Transit. There's a lot here that you probably would've guessed, but a couple things stand out to me as areas where there could be a ton of improvement.

(1) Just 4% of riders are retired. As that part of the population continues to grow, Metro Transit needs to be figuring out what is keeping older people from riding, whether it's the type of routes, the type of frequencies, feelings of safety, societal prejudices, etc. There are several senior living developments currently along the LRT, and one big one under construction, so there's a lot to be learned there.

(2) Just 11.8% of rides are for shopping, appointments. This looks like a huge mismatch to me, and a real area for growth for Metro Transit, because these trips make up a greater percentage of the average person's trips than the agency serves. These types of trips are theoretically good for transit but people aren't riding. One good trend on this front are an increasing number of urban grocery stores in MSP, including a couple that have opened recently or will open just steps from light rail (TJ's in the Mill District, Fresh Thyme in Prospect Park, the Cub in Hiawatha) and a few that are being built or opening this year on busy bus lines (Aldi on Lyndale and Good Grocer on Nicollet). Someday service in the Midtown Corridor will open up a ton of new possibilities for trips in this bucket, and the Social and Recreational bucket, which currently makes up 19.4% of trips.
What about route specific data? Does Metro Transit collect data on individual bus routes, if so, is this data made available to the public? I think we could learn a lot more by looking at how ridership trends are on specific bus routes, as opposed to buses in general.


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alexschief
Rice Park
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby alexschief » February 11th, 2019, 8:24 pm

Metro Transit publishes detailed ridership data on the Minnesota Geospatial Commons, and you can clean and organize that data to get more summary level statistics for routes and stops. The latest numbers are from Fall 2017 though, and were posted in March 2018, so hopefully we'll get detailed figures from Fall 2018 in about a month or so.
MNdible wrote:
February 11th, 2019, 6:15 pm
alexschief wrote:
February 11th, 2019, 4:42 pm
(2) Just 11.8% of rides are for shopping, appointments. This looks like a huge mismatch to me, and a real area for growth for Metro Transit, because these trips make up a greater percentage of the average person's trips than the agency serves. These types of trips are theoretically good for transit but people aren't riding.
I'm going to disagree with you here. These trips are not good for transit -- and riders of choice (meaning transit riders who have a car, or who are comfortable biking to shopping, or who are financially willing to pay for an Uber) are not going to use it.
US cities have traditionally not built their transit systems to accommodate this bucket of trips, but European and especially Asian cities closely link transit and shopping. Additionally, good transit, especially by dedicated rail, is unbeatable when you want to make a scheduled appointment. MSP doesn't have to stick its head in the sand like other American cities and devote itself to commutes and commutes only. MSP could encourage more transit oriented retail and services.

Rube Dali
Metrodome
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Contact:

Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Rube Dali » February 15th, 2019, 9:23 am

Metro Transit changes for March 9:
https://www.metrotransit.org/these-rout ... on-march-9

The big one is that Route 83 service after 7 PM is being eliminated.
Buildings, what buildings?

LakeCharles
Foshay Tower
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby LakeCharles » February 15th, 2019, 10:09 am

Does anyone know why the 18 is being extended down Washington/3rd to 4th Ave S?

Tcmetro
Wells Fargo Center
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Tcmetro » February 15th, 2019, 10:36 am

Maybe the turnaround at the development site at Washington and Hennepin is going to start construction?

Silophant
Moderator
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Silophant » February 15th, 2019, 10:57 am

Must be, then they can lay over in the transit center in the Gateway Ramp.

Bakken2016
Union Depot
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Bakken2016 » February 28th, 2019, 10:32 pm

That is exactly why the 18 is being extended.

DanPatchToget
US Bank Plaza
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby DanPatchToget » March 2nd, 2019, 2:10 pm

Not sure if this has already been mentioned, but Metro Transit is planning to cut weekend service on the 535 in June. All or most trips carry 5 or less riders.

Silophant
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Silophant » March 2nd, 2019, 2:46 pm

Bakken2016 wrote:
February 28th, 2019, 10:32 pm
That is exactly why the 18 is being extended.
Do you know, is it going to make stops along Washington/3rd, or is it going to be nonstop between Nicollet and the Gateway ramp?
DanPatchToget wrote: Not sure if this has already been mentioned, but Metro Transit is planning to cut weekend service on the 535 in June. All or most trips carry 5 or less riders.
Doesn't bode great for the Orange Line being more than a commuter service.

Tcmetro
Wells Fargo Center
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Tcmetro » March 3rd, 2019, 9:54 am

It looks like the 18 will stop on Nicollet at 3rd, then take Nicollet to Washington to 4th Av S, with the next stop and terminal on 4th Av S at S 3rd St. Buses go southbound by turning on S 3rd St, with a stop at 2nd Av S, then turning back to Nicollet. Stops are:
- Nicollet/S 3rd St (NB)
- 4th Av S/S 3rd St (terminal)
- S 3rd St/2nd Av S (SB)
- Nicollet/S 3rd St (SB)

You can see the new stops at: https://rideschedules.com/minneapolis-m ... -6902.html (select "Route Map", change the schedule to one after the change date, and click "Refresh Map".)

--

Unfortunate to hear about the low ridership/cancellation of the 535 on weekends. Not entirely surprising given that most transit trips are work/school related. As a lot of weekend trips are shorter and/or recreational, might be worthwhile to improve the local routes (e.g. 538/539/540 with better hours or frequencies).

Definitely cause for concern about the future Orange Line performance, but the Lake St stop and the Burnsville extension will help drive ridership (and hopefully better local bus connections).

mattaudio
Stone Arch Bridge
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby mattaudio » March 4th, 2019, 7:29 am

Stops at Franklin, 38th St, and Nicollet/62nd/Hub would help ridership too.

alexschief
Rice Park
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby alexschief » March 6th, 2019, 4:02 pm

Question for folks: what's the history of transit on Lexington Parkway?

The divergence in service between Snelling (aBRT every ten minutes) and Lexington (regular bus every half hour) is striking, given that these corridors are just a mile apart and serve similar land use. It makes sense to me that Lexington should be the poorer transit market, without the benefit of two colleges and with half of its possible catchment area all but eliminated south of Jefferson by 35E. But it does not make sense to me that its ridership should be so much poorer, with Lexington's #83 bus averaging 450-600 weekday riders from 2014-2016—even less than even the rump #84 bus on Snelling.

- Was service increased with the Green Line opening, and what was the result, especially compared to the #65 bus on Dale, which saw a huge increase in riders after being boosted in frequency when the Green Line arrived, and now runs every twenty minutes midday?
- The #83 currently diverts from Lexington at Como Park and drives around the park. That brings it closer to the zoo, but might it make more sense if the bus continued straight through the park instead?
- Why do the #84 and #65 terminate at the Roseville Mall, but the #83 terminates diagonally across an (uncrossable for pedestrians) highway interchange from the mall?

Multimodal
US Bank Plaza
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Multimodal » March 6th, 2019, 4:19 pm

The history of transit on Lexington Parkway is that there mostly wasn’t any.

When I lived on Lexington back in the day, the Parkway designation meant that no bus service would ever exist on it. Apparently that changed, briefly, in 2001, until it was restarted in 2014 because of the Green Line:

https://www.metrotransit.org/route-83-a ... on-parkway

alexschief
Rice Park
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby alexschief » March 6th, 2019, 4:43 pm

alexschief wrote:
March 6th, 2019, 4:02 pm
...especially compared to the #65 bus on Dale, which saw a huge increase in riders after being boosted in frequency when the Green Line arrived, and now runs every twenty minutes midday?
Whoops, I mean the #62 on Rice, which now runs every quarter hour and saw the bump in ridership.

What are the specific restrictions for buses on parkways?

Tcmetro
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Tcmetro » March 6th, 2019, 6:59 pm

Minneapolis requires a special permit for buses on the parkways, I'm not sure about in St Paul

Multimodal
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Re: Public Transit News and Current Happenings

Postby Multimodal » March 6th, 2019, 8:04 pm

Tcmetro wrote:Minneapolis requires a special permit for buses on the parkways, I'm not sure about in St Paul
Ah, that makes sense. The buses on Lexington aren’t even that big; they’re minibuses because of the railroad overpass south of Como Park.


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