Select Bus Service on Bx12 has been up & running for a few months now. The service has gotten such rave reviews & been a success that the MTA is already looking into expanding it to other routes. New York Daily News transit reporter Pete Donohue writes about the reviews & upcoming plans in an article that will appear in today’s print edition:
A speedier bus service launched as a pilot in the Bronx and upper Manhattan is off to a fast start, with a bump of nearly 5,000 daily riders, officials said Thursday.
The Bx12 route, where riders pay at curbside machines before boarding to shorten loading times, is slated for expansion, according to NYC Transit.
“It’s working out better than we planned,” said Joseph Smith, NYC Transit’s vice president in charge of buses.
Approximately 26,565 weekday riders are taking the new Select Bus Service, compared with 21,700 passengers who took the limited-bus service it replaced, officials said.
Bus trips during peak travel periods are 20% quicker since the service began and other fast-track strategies were launched in June, the agency said.
Click here for the complete report.
As with anything, you can expect your share of gripes. Based on the complaints listed in the article, I can understand where these people are coming from. While it is nice that a driver directs a passenger to depart the bus to buy their ticket & waits for them, that defeats the purpose of faster service. This is not a service where the bus is running once an hour, if someone does not have their ticket, they should be forced to wait for the next bus.
Lets assume this passenger causes a 2-4 minute delay which is quite possible. I mean if they did not know to buy a ticket in advance, who is to say that they know how to work the payment machine? While 2-4 minutes does not sound like a lot of time, it can add up if we are dealing with multiple offenders. As far as payment machines go, the MTA must stay on top of them to make sure they are working at all times. If not this could lead to people claiming machines were not working to skip fares or other potential headaches that could slow the trip down.
Overall it seems Select Bus Service is getting the job done. If they can iron out the kinks, this plan will go from hitting a home run to a grand slam!
xoxo Transit Blogger