About the Blog:

Guelph Politico is locally sourced and dedicated to covering the political and cultural scene in the City of Guelph. Est. 2008.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Transit Manager Says the Problems Without Peak Service Were Predictable

Almost two weeks into a peak-less summer, people are still frustrated by the reduction of service hours to Guelph Transit, and Transit's General Manager Phil Meagher wants you to know that he feels your pain.
"I appreciate everyone's concerns," Meagher said to me by phone. He explained that Transit has received "hundreds of complaints," and while they're doing what they can to make do without peak service, the issues he and transit users are facing were predictable and explained to council last year. 
"They made the choice knowing full well the impact," Meagher said about the decision to cut peak service from May to September during city council's budget deliberations last December. "They were well advised. If a route is 37 minutes [long], it can't be done in 30 minutes."
Meagher said that Routes #8, #10, and #13 are especially problematic as routes that aren't designed to be driven in a 30-minute timeline. "It didn't work in 2012," he added, referencing the year before Guelph Transit implemented a system-wide route and schedule relaunch.
As for specific complaints, including one of my own, Meagher says he is both unaware of any organized attempt by the members of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1189 to get people riled up about the cuts, nor had heard anything about drivers needing to "Save milage" by idling. "I have no idea what they're talking about," he said candidly. 
Representatives from ATU 1189 could not be reached for comment. 
In the meantime, complaints on social media continue to pile up, including some influential members of the public.

Another problem that transit's encountering is the heavy construction across town, most notably the closure of Gordon St. south of Wellington. Meagher puts the blame for traffic confusion there on motorists that aren't following the detour. "There's a detour for transit and there's a detour for motorists," he said. "I think people aren't paying attention, and the message has been out there for weeks and weeks."
Unfortunately, all Meagher can advise is patience. "Bear with us," he said when asked for advice for transit users. "We're going back to the regular schedule in September, but for now, plan your trip accordingly."


JS said...

Shame on the Mayor and councillors for their shortsightedness. This is the result when people who don't use transit, try to run it. Disgusting.

Anonymous said...

If you can't drive a 37 min route in 30 mins, how did you drive it in 20? By this logic should they be increasing to 40 min service and then no one will be late.

How does changing the frequency of buses to a stop affect how long it takes to get from point A to point B?

I know I'm not an expert in Transit planning, but I just can't wrap my head around how the length of time it takes to drive between two points has changed?

I understand the transfers will be affected, but I would assume that the planning software can do 20 min schedules, 21 min, 22 min, etc, and line everything up?

Anonymous said...

i have taken transit for most of my life ,, and i have seen many changes occur ,, but doing backward issues makes no sense to me ,, its nice the tax payers of guelph who take guelph transit only truely get to enjoy the enriched services when the students are around ...i am a cleaner and get around on buses so when a run has been pulled for summer and the run is the 56 then they figure they will balance it out to assit so they run the 5 a,, well thats lovely for 3 in the am and 3 in afternoon ,,, after 6 pm and weekends there is no buses that go by the newest builds in guelph so u have a thirty minute walk to stone and victoria road which has no sidewalks and is incredibley dangerous or a 30 min walk to summerfield,, so a person old or handicapped trying to walk this distance is that fair as a passager of guelph transit ,, the drivers are being yelled at because of this , drivers need a stop and by them stopping down town they are missing the connection at the university ,,, many have said the councelors and major should for one month sign a wavour to have to take transit am and pms and weekends and then make changes and u say if you are afraid of being late for work etc go earlier is that fair who wants to wait and be an hour playing and waiting on buses ok i am now said what i wanted to for some time thankyou

Susan Carey said...

On a 20 minute schedule there are more buses running. A bus has 40 minutes to complete a 37 minute run as two buses are running it, with one only halfway through when the other begins.

Anonymous said...

I understand that Susan, but if I am on the first bus and it takes 40 mins to get there, the second bus doesn't get me there any faster if it is 20 min or 20 min behind me. If only one bust ever ran or there was a continuious stream of buses, it would still take the one I am riding on the same amount of time. The people waiting at the stop would have options, but once they got on the bus, it wouldn't matter when or if the next bus comes.

Unless changing from 20 min to 30 min changes the relationship between time and space, I still don't understand the issue.