The results are in and some Columbus bus routes may soon feel the heat. Last year, METRA added new lines and extended hours per customers requests.
Tuesday, the transit system brought a year’s worth of research before city council.
“There are a couple of routes that are really underperforming, that recommendations — based on ridership numbers, based on the data that we have collected — we’re recommending to discontinue,” says Rosa Evans.
I decided to hop on one of the routes under review, Line 8 that services the Columbus Public Library to the Government Center. Tiki Wyatt says she hasn’t been driving for Route 8 for very long, but it has been a noticeable difference.
“Other routes you’re either picking someone up or dropping someone off at every other stop or so. This route I could probably drive all the way to the library and won’t pick anybody up, and maybe on the way back I’ll pick up one person,” says Tiki Wyatt.
And we passed plenty of empty stops.
Reporter: “We’ve been on for about an hour. Driver: “Yup, on the way back haven’t picked up anybody.”
Still, vacant seats to go around, until finally.
“Oh! We may have someone!” says the driver.
That someone, a Route 8 regular who says he relies on the bus five days a week.
“I work at the library and this route goes directly to the library and that’s a major plus for me, because I have no means of transportation and I don’t like to walk,” says Reginald Taylor.
He adds he doesn’t think he’d be the only one sad to see Route 8 go.
“I wouldn’t cut this route, it’s a good route. I mean if you take a look at everything we just passed, can’t beat it,” says Taylor.
And METRA wants to hear from it’s riders before making any changes.
“Once we collect all the data… it will go through the process with council before any decisions are made,” says Evans.