Bus maps? Seriously, Twin Cities, where are they?

  • Article by: SAM ROCKWELL
  • Updated: September 26, 2013 - 7:32 PM

Maybe if the bus system were user-friendly, more people would ride it.

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  • Comments

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bulldog93Sep. 26, 13 9:08 PM

Bus maps are hardly the problem with ridership.

hermajestySep. 26, 13 9:12 PM

Yes, the lack of information is deplorable, especially with the zigzag routes that some buses follow. Why couldn't all the bus stops have a map of the route and a list of times? I lived without a car in Portland, and I wanted to be car lite here, but it's harder than I thought. The buses don't run often enough (every 10-15 minutes should be the maximum interval between buses on all urban routes), they don't run on all arterial streets, and the connections don't work. Furthermore, they penalize their best riders by charging more during rush hour. I still ride the bus when I can, and as far as I'm concerned, nothing beats light rail to the airport, but I know that the system could really use some improvement.

FrankLSep. 26, 13 9:14 PM

Even the largest cellphone screen is only 3 x 5 inches. Tough to see details for even a trip between MSP and downtown. Scrolling around gets old in a hurry. Why are simple things so hard to do in MN?

furguson11Sep. 26, 13 9:24 PM

Google maps, choose the transit option. Also try Routes and Schedules on the MTC Transit site. Or pick a map out of the holder on the bus you are riding or ask the driver. It isn't that hard, all you have to be is somewhat motivated and do a tiny bit of planning.

davehougSep. 26, 13 9:34 PM

How many miles of light rail or trolley would it take to have real-time update displays at every stop???? Care to know if your bus just left or will be here soon :)

lechevalier5Sep. 26, 13 9:54 PM

I haven't ridden a bus in this city since 1992 and that was a disaster and I don't see any reason to start now. Even when I broke my leg I wouldn't ride a bus in this city. But I won't hesitate to ride the bus in Chicago, they have a good system. Metro Transit is a joke here.

tituspulloSep. 26, 1311:30 PM

This has more to do with the apparent laziness of the author than the MTC. Getting around on the bus isn't exactly rocket science.

mn2niceSep. 26, 1311:30 PM

bulldog93 you didn't mention what you think the problem with ridership is, which leaves the rest of us guessing. ------- I happen to agree with hermajesty's comments. Effective communication of routes, stop times and a map of the route at every bus shelter and on every bus would really help. When I lived in the cities I rode the buses frequently. Aside from the communication issue, it would also be nice if they were considerably cleaner. Duluth Transit has a policy that restricts the use of baby strollers on buses; users have to remove the kid and fold them up out of the aisle or they are not allowed on the buses. Some common sense things that would make riding the bus more pleasurable.

tituspulloSep. 26, 1311:31 PM

lechevalier5Sep. 26, 13 9:54 PM I haven't ridden a bus in this city since 1992 and that was a disaster and I don't see any reason to start now.____So you haven't ridden on a local bus in 21 years and you think you have any idea about the system?

shuckSep. 27, 13 3:13 AM

Go through the list below and identify the reasons why you would/wouldn't ride the bus regularly. I suspect for the vast majority of people map quality and availability are not going to be the deciding factor. People that want/have to ride the bus will make it work with an extra 90 seconds of research. People who don't want to ride are unlikely to be swayed by a clearer understanding of either simple connections, or the fact that many 20 minute car rides can only be replicated by a 2 hour bus trip with two connections and 40 minute "layovers" (If you happen to want to go the "right" direction at a given time of day. If not, add some more time). Slow. Inexpensive. Noisy/fumes. Environmentally Friendly. Unpredictable. Allows multi-tasking. Poor cross-connection options. Social. Limited hours & destinations. Unlimited ride pass for fixed price. Multiplicative cost for extra riders. Ability to accommodate bikes and wheelchairs. Cleanliness/quality/comfort of surroundings. Ability to handle large and small groups. Hard to understand system maps.


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