Here are the reasons why relocating the bus stops north of Santa Clara Street (pushed by Downtown Association) is a bad idea:
The two pictures above illustrate that the new bus stop on First Street north of Santa Clara Street cannot fit two buses without intruding into the crosswalk on First Street, obstructing the view of pedestrian signals and creating an unsafe situation. Since this stop is served by four bus routes, if three or more buses arrive, some of the buses would block the entire crosswalk and intrude onto Santa Clara Street.
On Second Street, the bus stop north of Santa Clara Street is served by southbound lines 72 and 73, which interestingly, the northbound bus stop is located south of Santa Clara Street. From this bus stop, the next southbound bus stop is four blocks away on San Fernando Street by 5th Street, at the Martin Luther King Jr. Library.
On the other hand, within the same few blocks, there are three additional northbound bus stops for lines 72 and 73 located on San Fernando by Third, San Fernando by First, and First Street south of Santa Clara Street. Too many bus stops for northbound and not enough bus stops for the southbound.
Here's another reason why city shuttles should not replace large buses: The low capacity shuttles can easily get overcrowded and thus create a hazard for riders. Last week, a teenager in Palo Alto fell out of a shuttle bus through the wheelchair lift door. Apparently, the wheelchair lift was not installed and the shuttle was packed.
Palo Alto shuttle isn't the only shuttle that gets overcrowded. The DASH shuttle in Downtown San Jose can get overcrowded when San Jose State is in session. Last year, a sudden shuttle overcrowding in Half Moon Bay (San Mateo County) prompted SamTrans to temporarily put additional shuttles and rerouted its only large bus route in the area to better serve the students.