Better bus stops

Bus stops are making the big time.

Metro transit is launching an Enhanced Transit Information Signage Survey (The ETISS). All are encouraged to participate.

Metro Transit wants to enhance information at bus stops. Please answer a few quick questions to help us identify new improvements.

Also, Eric Roper has a nice article in today’s Strib: Building a Better Bus Stop quoting previous Streets.MN posts on the subject.

University of Minnesota professor David Levinson has written extensively and recently at Streets.MNabout what he has dubbed the “sorry state of bus stop signs” in the Twin Cities. Levinson argues that bus signs in the region provide too little information, particularly compared to other transit-friendly cities.

“If you go to most bus stops in the city of Minneapolis, the bus stop sign says ‘bus stop,'” Levinson said in an interview this fall. “Which is I guess better than not having a sign at all. But if you go to another city where they care about transit, the bus stop signs provide a lot of information about where the buses are going, when they run, what the schedule is.”

 

Also Salon.com has an article today by Alex Pareene: Why mass transit is doomed in America: Politicians don’t know people who use it: If big, liberal cities can’t adequately fund their transit systems, what hope does anywhere else have? Also extensively quoting Streets.MN:

Take Minneapolis, a decently dense city that could, and ought to, support a much more extensive mass transit system. The existing system, mainly buses and a light rail line, with more lines planned, is operated by a division of the Metropolitan Council, and, predictably, the council designs transit in a way that reflects the ostensible needs of the entire metro area, including suburbs that sprawl out miles beyond the city center. The result is a series of ambitious plans to build rail lines traveling from outside the city to downtown, while the urban bus system is unreliable, neglected and nearly impossible to navigate without extensive prior knowledge. Meanwhile, the light rail lines the council and the state are pressing forward with have been designed in a bizarre fashion, along low-traffic, low-density routes and ignoring the most dense and highly trafficked corridors in the city. The city government is now fighting with the council over its plan to put a streetcar line on one major urban avenue. The streetcar is probably not as good a solution as either improving bus service, on the cheap side, or creating a real subway or light rail line, on the more expensive, but it’s the only proposed transit expansion right now in the area designed to serve people who actually live in the city. Here, again, politicians don’t ride the bus, and likely know hardly anyone who does regularly.