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MTS To Cut Sunday Bus Service, But Improve Trolley Service

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Aired 2/9/10

The San Diego Metropolitan Transit System plans to radically cut back bus service on Sundays next month. At the same time the agency is making significant improvements to its trolley service.

— The San Diego Metropolitan Transit System plans to radically cut back bus service on Sundays next month. At the same time the agency is making significant improvements to its trolley service.

A San Diego trolley.
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Above: A San Diego trolley.

Rob Schupp of the Metropolitan Transit System says huge budget shortfalls have left his agency with no choice but to reduce public bus transport again. Starting next month about 145,000 Sunday bus trips will be eliminated or reduced.

“We’re going to make probably the biggest cut in MTS history,” Schupp said, “We’re knocking out $7 million worth of service on Sundays. Entire routes on Sunday will be discontinued, a lot of routes will have lower frequencies. It’s up to 200,000 people that we’re affecting with this service cut.”

Schupp said lower sales taxes have affected the funding available for transit, and the state has withheld millions of dollars that were supposed to be earmarked to operate public transportation.

On the other hand, the agency has a capital budget of $600 million to upgrade trolley lines, so passengers can get anywhere they want to go on one transfer.

By next year almost 60 new trolley cars will be running on those lines.

Schupp described the changes at the CALTRANS annual Transportation Update meeting.

Comments

Avatar for user 'elowe'

elowe | February 12, 2010 at 2:54 p.m. ― 4 years, 5 months ago

The reconfiguration of the trolley to force fewer transfers is a very smart thing that we need for smooth, convenienet rides. However, do not be fooled that this in any way will make up for the rides being lost due to extreme cuts in Sunday bus service. The trolley hardly runs on Sundays.

In SD, transit is not sexy, and not enough people talk about it in oder to press upon their legislators to do someting about it. Conversely, regional planners are greatly depending on transit as an alternative to driving as our region grows. We need to have support from our leaders, not just the elected ones, to fund a robust transit service that is desirable enough for households only to have one car. The mobility of the future will not be designed to accomodate another million residents, with another million vehicles. Its not good for our health, our wallets, the air we breathe or the atmosphere. Transit has got to be a good choice, or no one will choose to take it.

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