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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Round Trip Red Bus Usage Statistics to Manhattan and Queens Plaza During Tram Shutdown

Read this document on Scribd: Roosevelt Island Red Bus Statistics

RIOC President Steve Shane forwards the following information regarding round trip use of the Red Bus to Queens Plaza and Manhattan at 2nd Avenue & 60th Street during the recent Roosevelt Island Tram Shutdown.

During the 9 days the Tram was out of service from June 10-18, a total of 633 passengers used the Red Bus to Queens Plaza/Manhattan and 406 passengers from Manhattan back to Roosevelt Island. The average daily passenger use to Queens Plaza/Manhattan was 70 and from Manhattan/Queens Plaza 45.

According to Mr. Shane:
See the stats on daily red bus usage during the Tram outage. First day,
there was no service to Manhattan. Queens Plaza seemed underutilized.
Obvious spike on weekends. Was ridership gaining as it became better
known? Was one week too short an anecdotal period as people could
rearrange their lives for an outage of such short duration? Last day
(6/18), Tram was back in service, for free, at 5PM.

Let's all think about these questions as next spring approaches and we
have to fashion some system. We will again be flexible, but availability
of vehicles, scheduling drivers, budget issues (wildly escalating fuel
costs), and other such will have to be considered.

The question of what, if anything, a public agency should do with
respect to transportation of school children to off Island schools needs
to be discussed in the context of New York City policy. The confluence
of rush hours and school hours makes it very difficult.

I look forward to your input.Next March or April will be here all too
Any suggestions?


Hanahlly said...

Escalating fuel costs? Are these buses not branded as ELECTRIC????
My next comment will probably draw several angry responses, but I'm going to write it anyway...

I am willing to bet that if the pickup location and drop-off location was at the Octagon, the usage numbers would have dramatically increased. Being the furtherest distance away from the tram and subway, we Octagonites crave, dream, fantasize and pray for the implementation of a shorter, better commute off this island. We are the target demographic who WILL look at the schedule and line up to take our spot on our FIRST EVER express commute into the city.
If you don't believe me, I throw out this challenge. Next time the situation presents itself an there will be direct red bus service to Manhattan, designate the Octagon as the pick-up and drop off location and then compare the results to this last experiment. I'm willing to bet the increase in daily passengers will be an eye-opener for many.


That's certainly a controversial proposal and what you say may be true. However, if a bus to Manhattan is so popular to Octagoners why wouldn't they just walk down to Gristedes and pick up the red bus to Manhattan there. It's not that far away. Octagon is no further away from Gristides than the WIRE buildings in the middle of the Island .

Anonymous said...

Hana: the buses are hybrid technology and thus still need gasoline. Secondly, the pick-up location was in front of Gristedes, hardly a track from the Octagon. You make it sound like the Octagon is at the end of the world.

All that said, I think the Manhattan or Queens bound red bus should circle the island before it leaves and after it returned. I don't think having just one stop is sufficient to attract enough riders given the alternative that we still have the subway. I cannot think of any reason why this cannot be done.

Also, drop the Queens Plaza bound bus. Seriously. Just focus on a bus that goes express to Manhattan. There is already an MTA bus that brings you to LIC.

Anonymous said...

I don't think the bus to Manhattan should pick up at the Octagon but, my guess as to why Octagoners don't walk down to take the bus is because, they like most people, don't want to walk if they don't have to. If you are in one of the wire buildings you can take the first red bus going either to the subway or to Gristedes. Once your on a red bus going towards the F, it doesn't make sense to get off and wait for another bus as the train (assuming running into Manhattan) will be faster.

Anonymous said...

If the bus into Manhattan had done a circuit round the island versus the one stop location I think ridership would have been increased. Also I didn't find out about the option for the bus into Manhattan well into the week and honestly the hours of transport were somewhat limited also possibly discouraging use of the bus.

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