I must thank Jim Duncan for notifying us about this woman’s blog traveling and chronicling the Charlottesville
Transit Service Area Transit. Given that Latitude 38 is a strong proponent of non-auto transit, some thought to our bus system is certainly due it’s time.
I used to ride the #4 from JPA extended to West Main Street for work, and the #7 (I believe) from Fifeville to business school behind Barrack’s Road. The #4 was perpetually empty. It seemed such a waste to have such a large bus. The UVA bus was also often empty, but had a lot of hospital traffic. I always thought the Trolley was the most like a regular urban bus, with a real mix of people, as most everyone uses West Main Street and a free bus is a great thing.
I recently remarked to Cory that bus/bike ridership will never increase as long as roads keep getting expanded to accommodate cars. The pressure point for trying out a new mode of transit gets removed and people find that individual car travel remains the most efficient and cost effective. This may be more true for bike/pedestrian use, as buses must use the same lanes as cars. If there was a high speed bus lane on 29, UVA commuters could find that the bus alternative is really worth trying though. I think the best hope for bus use in Charlottesville is the commuter, who has the same route every day at the most congested time. The rush hours are a time when frequency could be bumped up to make riding the bus actually competitive from a efficient and comfort perspective.