Thursday, April 24, 2008

Cincinnati's Metro's routing and scheduling are pretty exclusively geared towards the notion of getting dayshift workers from the neighborhoods to the central business district.
This routing scheme is getting kinda shaky as businesses & homes shift here and there but Metro seems to be slowly adapting.
Where their model really fails and they seem to be doing nothing about it - is scheduling.
While fine for standard dayshifters, the frequency of trips in the 11 PM to 1 AM time slot makes it hard for second and third shift workers to use the system. The problem gets even worse if the rider has to transfer. This can mean 30 - 40 minute waits at midnight at Government Square in January. Frequently these buses are very off schedule, too.
This plan does not address the needs of a society that is increasingly becoming a 24 hr society.
Even as a traditional dayshift society, a common activity is the worker going out on weekend evenings.
Metro's schedules are exactly the same on Friday nights as Monday through Thursday. Saturday is even worse with less frequent trips and some routes not being served at all. I doubt all routes would need the increase in trips on Friday and Saturday evenings, but investigating, locating and targeting centers of entertainment for more active service seems to be a good place to start.
Metro tries to work with different areas - primarily in the outer regions (King's Island) but neighborhood business organizations might do well to petition Metro (or Metro petitioning communities) about adding these late night runs.
As the city embarks on a streetcar system, I wonder if they will continue this antiquated and provincial scheduling scheme. It makes little sense in the downtown area that is a hub of entertainment and conventions to not have frequent late night service.

1 comment:

Queer Cincinnati said...

As a third shifter, you're right. It's obnoxious. Just TRY to get a bus after midnight -- even on the weekdays, you can't.

IMHO, there should be at least one -- running through Clifton and Downtown (and I'm a Price Hill res) -- that runs 24 hours.