Friday, June 26, 2009

How long will that last

Although next month's service changes are nothing compared to what occurred in January 2008, VTA nonetheless is announcing it onboard buses. While the July service changes mostly involve reallocation of resource, some service was removed (by not reallocating it) because of the budget constraints.

However, with rising unemployment and drop in sales taxes, VTA internally is planning for a 10% service cut possibly for October and move the approved fare increase date from January to October. These changes would require public meetings and board approvals, which need to happen soon.

Other agencies have done more planning earlier in preparation for service reductions. AC Transit has proposed a plan to reduce service by almost 15% after a series of public meetings. SamTrans is also preparing for a cut of up to 15% and scheduled public meetings in July to receive comments. While details are pending, SamTrans cuts most likely involve trimming express service and elimination of overnight routes. AC Transit's cuts involve drawing a new bus network in Hayward and Fremont, as well as elimination of some routes in other cities.

On the other hand, VTA hosted public meetings last year and is spending money now to promote cost-neutral service adjustments. Is VTA leaving us unprepared for significant service reductions soon after?

7 comments:

arcady said...

SamTrans eliminating overnight service would be a disaster! Right now, at least there's some link between SF and Santa Clara County during the late night hours. Without this, there would be no late night service at all between Palo Alto and Daly City, which would leave a huge gap, especially considering that the last northbound Caltrain leaves Palo Alto at 11 pm and the last southbound leave SF at midnight.

Anonymous said...

Well, I guess I'm glad then that the only VTA bus routes I rely on are the big well traveled ones (22, 522, the various De Anza routes in the 50s).

Amanda

VTARider said...

I have not heard of VTA planning a 10% service reduction for October, 2009. If it was to happen, it would occur January, 2010, since Board won't be in session till August.

VTARider said...

Lines 22 and 522 are not exempt from service cuts. Line 22 has been cut tremendously over the last ten years.

-removal of service off Rigoletta to Tully.
-Removal of service from Franklin mall
-Removal of service to Menlo Park
-reduced service from 10-10 minutes.

If VTA has to cut service, Line 522 would more than likely not operate on Saturday and will experience early and late morning trip deletions.

VTARider said...

VTA Board of directors have asked staff to present a list of service reductions for October, the actually percent is not known.

accountablevta said...

The word from the inside is that VTA is planning for a 8% cut next January, but with a fare increase to start in October. The January implementation is not surprising since the staff is already running out of time to prepare for an October cut, and that the VTA board did not meet this month.

Anonymous said...

I guess VTA is on its way back to the CT days were most routes operated hourly. I hope the 180/181 is fixed.

I did the math...and the 8% reduction will allow VTA to complete retire the 97/98/99/50 series with the arrival of the new hybrids.