Changes to Regional Transit’s routes affect many

 

Sacramento Regional Transit cut 25 weekday routes and altered numerous others June 20. How is it affecting the daily riders?

Mary Glick, 50, takes bus 72 multiple times a week, a line that has been limited by the new cuts. She says she’s restricted to what hours she works at her downtown Denny’s now, but counts herself lucky to live so close to her house from her light rail station.

"It’s kind of a bummer," she said. "Thank God it only takes me 40 minutes to walk home."

Regional Transit cut the routes to save money and provide a cushion forthe $25 million that was lacking in their budget. However, the cuts could cause even more loss to RT’s income.

"I don’t even know if I can keep riding," Sacramento City College student Rodney Alvarez, 20, said. "It’s the way I get home at night, but I might just start grabbing rides from friends instead."

The altered routes are as follows:

Cut routes:

Weekdays – Routes 4, 9, 10, 18, 20, 36, 50E, 63, 73, 83, 89, 94, 95, 100, 101, 102, 104, 106, 107, 141, 142, 200, 201, 251 and 261

Saturdays – Routes 5, 6, 8, 13, 14, 16, 24, 28, 54, 61, 65, 74 and 143

Sundays – 8, 13, 14 and 22

Stopped after 9 p.m.:

Weekdays – Light Rail (Blue and Gold Lines), Routes 1, 13, 14, 15, 21, 23, 30,38, 51, 56, 61, 62, 67, 68, 72, 80, 81, 82, 86, 87, 88 and 93

Saturdays – Light Rail (Blue and Gold Lines). Routes 1, 15, 21, 22, 23, 30, 51, 56, 67, 68, 81 and 88

Sundays – Light Rail (Blue and Gold Lines), Routes 1, 15, 21, 51, 56, 67, 68, 81 and 88

Many routes will have altered times of arrival and departure, some changing from every 15 minutes to 20 or 30 minutes:

Weekdays – Routes 1, 2, 6, 34, 38 and 61

Saturdays – Light Rail (Blue and Gold Lines), Routes 1, 30, 51 and 81

Sundays – Light Rail (Blue and Gold Lines), Routes 23, 30, 56 and 81

A few routes have had slight changes to their schedules:

Weekdays – Routes 74 and 75

Saturdays – Route 55

One was changed completely:

Weekdays – Route 28

For full details on individual routes, visit www.sacrt.com/schedules/current/routes.stm

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June 24, 2010 | 10:30 AM

It is truly a shame that a city the size of ours cannot support an effective, useful public transit system. After using theimpressive, efficient transit systems in Europe, NY, and DC, I have seen first hand what we are missing out on. RT has always been lacking, but with fewer routes and reduced schedules, its usefulness will continue to decline.

June 24, 2010 | 12:24 PM

It’s ridiculous that a city the size of ours continues to languish when it comes to efficient, on-time, safe, transit systems. The limiting of routes and the raising of fares only serves to make less pay the lions share, with the majority of those who could ride, not being effectively serviced.

I still question whether their budget is actually a budget shortfall from the previous year, or just from what they predicted for this year. It seems that in the past I’ve heard that their budget increases every year, and when the increase can’t be funded, then they call it a shortfall, even though the budget may still be higher than the previous year.

In the end, they need to realize that a handful of people cannot pay for the entire transit system. Their management needs to figure out how to manage this situation properly and ensure that they get the most amount of riders, on the most amount of routes, at the optimal fee.

June 24, 2010 | 4:39 PM

If there was another transit provider in Sacramento, RT would likely go out of business.

RTs lack of communication about route changes is appalling. They do not have the capability for riders to sign up for updates or service outages. (Elk Grove Transit and Yolobus allow riders to subscribe to and receive alerts via email or smartphone.)

In the meantime, the 7th Street construction has caused disruptions to downtown bus service, including stops that are discontinued, that has taken many riders unawares. While some information about the service disruptions appears on their website, if you know where to look for it, they have not updated their Routes and Schedules, which is where a novice bus rider would look for information. In addition, the service disruption information is confusing (not written with the rider in mind).

Some bus drivers verbally alert their regular riders of upcoming changes; however, it seems that the drivers themselves often do not know of the changes. And not all drivers are inclined to communicate with their riders.

RT has been financially in trouble as long as I can remember. They need a new business model and a new Board of Directors.

June 24, 2010 | 6:43 PM

where is the leadership for an effective, attractive transit system for Sacramento? does it exist at all?

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