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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Bus times

Posted By on Wed, Sep 10, 2008 at 12:40 PM

There were a couple of things I left out of my opus on Halifax transit, and I was reminded of one of them again last night as I waited for a bus to take me home to Dartmouth from the city council meeting at city hall.

Now, there are lots of buses connecting downtown Halifax to the Bridge Terminal in Dartmouth---the #1, 10, 14/61, 53, 58, 59, 68, 87---and most of these run even at night and at off-peak times like at night. Most of them run the same route from the corner of Spring Garden and South Park, down Spring Garden to Barrington, up to Cogswell, around Gottingen and over the Macdonald Bridge.

But here's the deal: they all run on the same schedule, so I find myself waiting around for 15 or 20 minutes waiting for a bus, then four or five come all at once. I don't much really mind this time of year, but during the winter time, all I want is to get out of the elements. It's also a huge issue for people concerned about their safety while waiting forever for a bus at night, and for people who simply want the most possible convenience. Why can't they stagger those four or five buses to run one each every five minutes?

I actually know the answer to that, kind of. It's what I call "California scheduling": the theory is that no one much minds waiting around at a bus stop in 30 degree weather while watching the proverbial celebrities and wanna be celebrities walk by, and what they really want is to be able to catch their connecting bus with no wait. Yea, well, that makes sense in sunny and celebrity filled California, but makes no damned sense whatsoever here in the frozen north. Here, the sensible thing to do is to quickly get bus riders to a warm, or at least covered bus terminal, where they might have to wait longer for their connecting bus, but they'll be out of the elements.

End of rant.

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