Public bus lines might seem fixed to bus shelters, but changing those routes could give people greater access to jobs, medical services, and more.
That’s one way that bus networks in the D.C. area could be improved, a consultant told transportation stakeholders during a virtual “Bus Champions” roundtable held yesterday (Tuesday) by MetroNow, a conglomeration of commerce and transit advocacy groups.
The coalition is calling on the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority to follow through with a 2019 initiative called the Bus Transformation Project, which envisioned buses as the dominant mode of transportation for the region by 2030.
Scudder Wagg, senior associate of Jarrett Walker and Associates, a public transit consulting firm with offices across the country, discussed how bus network redesigns can improve communities by maximizing access to different destinations, creating more freedom and opportunity.
But speakers on the roundtable also acknowledged that such changes can disrupt commuters and even ruin what were once manageable trips for elderly riders and those with disabilities, so planners need to consider potential accommodations and ways to minimize disruptions.
Wagg noted that transit reworkings can be controversial, but in places like Alexandria, which implemented a redesign last year and introduced free fares, the overhaul resulted in increased ridership, Mayor Justin Wilson said.
In a similar vein, Fairfax County is exploring a reduced-fare option for low-income riders. For the time being, it has eliminated transfer fees between Metro trains and Fairfax Connector buses, except for express routes and the Wolf Trap shuttle.
Foursquare ITP President and CEO Lora Byala said the transportation firm recently led a revamp of the BaltimoreLink system that resulted in service to 28% more carless households, 32% more single-vehicle households, and other benefits.
Her firm also worked with Fairfax County on a route optimization study involving the Herndon and Reston areas involving the extension of the Silver Line Metrorail, where new stations could open this year. Fairfax County’s Board of Supervisors is slated to vote on proposed service changes for that corridor on Feb. 22.
To prevent policy efforts from creating more disruptions than solutions, consulting firm speakers noted the importance of showing options to the public and engaging with riders throughout the process. Other kinds of travelers, such as drivers, can also provide insights, Byala said.
For WMATA, the pandemic has staggered many planned initiatives, such as evaluating a bus network redesign, according to a progress report by MetroNow released in January.
The report concluded Metro was on track with some initial efforts but behind on public outreach.
Previously, WMATA said it was coordinating with local jurisdictions for work on restructuring the region’s bus network to create a “customer-focused system that improves access to destinations, increases ridership, and makes efficient and equitable use of resources.”
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The Georgetown Visitation Masqueraders proudly present
Descendants The Musical
Art House 7 warmly welcomes you to our upcoming Fall 2 session of classes starting on October 30th. We’re thrilled to offer a diverse range of mediums and flexible class lengths, catering to a wide age range, starting from as young as 2, and, of course, providing a multitude of engaging options for adults!
Our classes cover an exciting spectrum of creative mediums, including fiber arts such as knitting, modern embroidery, crochet, and sewing. We also offer classes in ceramics on the wheel, drawing, watercolor, gouache, oil, acrylic, still-life painting, and captivating Japanese Suminagashi and printmaking. One of the highlights of this session is the highly anticipated 5-week “Painting the Portrait and Figure” workshop, led by the renowned local artist, Danni Dawson.
For our younger artists, we have specially designed classes like “Art Exploration through Impressionism” for students in kindergarten through 5th grade, an engaging “Art Together” parent-child class designed for 2–4-year-olds, and a “Teen Taught Art Club” tailored for kindergarteners through 4th graders.
The Ravel Dance Company will present the beloved holiday tradition The Nutcracker. It is Christmas Eve and the Stahlbaum family’s daughter Clara has received a Nutcracker from the mysterious toymaker and godfather Herr Drosselmeyer. Follow her journey through the Pine