Metro planning budget-balancing bus cuts
Every bureaucracy has its rules, regulations and systems that define how it can proceed in a given situation. Under transit authority rules guiding the upcoming budget cuts, the changes proposed in Metrobus operations are "minor adjustments." Placing them in that category would allow Metro to impose them relatively quickly and without public hearings.
The adjustments under consideration will indeed look minor, unless you depend on that particular bus route, in which case, the changes disrupt your life in a major way.
Here's a rundown of the Metrobus changes that General Manager John B. Catoe Jr. is planning. The changes will be reviewed by the Metro board on Thursday. [For a look at the Metrorail proposals, see this posting.]
Service cut summary
These changes, planned for the end of March, would save Metro $1.082 million.
-- Lengthen the gap between buses or eliminate trips on 31 lines with low ridership.
-- Eliminate four routes or segments of routes where ridership is low.
-- Restructure service on three lines.
-- Make operations more efficient on up to a dozen lines through measures that include eliminating some bus stops.
Here's a more specific look at routes that would be affected by those changes.
Increasing gaps and trip elimination
-- Increasing the gap between buses during peak periods on weekdays: Routes 70, 80, 94, 52, 53, 54, B8, G2, G8, H8, L1/2, P6, J11/12,16G,H,W
-- Increasing the gap between buses during off peak hours: H6, 62, 64, 16G
-- Weekend Headway Widening 64 G2 N6 W2,3 16G
-- Eliminate some weekday trips: B24, C11, C22, C26, C4
D12,14 F13 F2 J11,12 J4 K6 P12 R2 R4 T2 V12
-- Eliminate weekend trips: D12/14, F2, J11/12, K6, P12, R2, R4, V12
Route segment elimination
-- 80: Every second trip to Kennedy Center
-- 16G: Extension to Crystal City
-- 52, 53, 54: Every third trip to L'Enfant Plaza
- J1: Cut back to Medical Center Station
Restructure, reroute service
-- Changes are planned on Routes 18P, 28X and N2/4/6.
-- Some bus stops would be eliminated on lines in the District, Maryland and Virginia.
I mentioned that Metro has its rules, like any bureaucracy, and that's going to affect how soon these changes will occur. The changes in bus routes have to be designed by planners and conveyed to operations managers by mid February. Meetings will then be scheduled with employees in the bus divisions and with the union representing the transit workers. The changes will take effect on Sunday, March 28.
The budget balancing described here is for the fiscal year that ends June 30. But given the even bigger budget problems looming for the year that starts July 1, it's highly unlikely that these changes would be rescinded when the new budget year starts.
How will this affect your bus travels? Are there alternative cuts you would make?
January 5, 2010; 10:21 AM ET
Categories: Metro | Tags: Dr. Gridlock, Metrobus
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