Public Transit Planner Jarrett Walker

Jarrett Walker presents Abundant Access: Public Transit as an Instrument of Freedom

 

What is the best bus network possible for our beautiful city? You might have considered it, or you might have heard what others have proposed, from our mayor to the person sitting next to you on the bus.

Jarrett Walker has considered and redesigned numerous public transit systems from all over the world, and he will be in Saskatoon this Saturday, March 12 at 7:30 pm at the Broadway Theatre to talk about his experiences. There will also be a reception after the event.

If you’re able to make it to the event, let us know what you think on our Facebook page, or at our next meeting.

Great Places-Jarrett Walker-March 12

8th Street Transit Service Plans

Saskatoon Transit Public Engagement Opportunity-8th Street Transit Service Plans

 

Is it possible that Saskatoon Transit will make strides forward? Or perhaps you don’t agree with the new 8th street transit service plans. To get more information about the new plans for routes along 8th Street, attend Saskatoon Transit’s Engagement Opportunity on March 16th, 4 pm, at TCU Place. If you can’t make it, fill out the survey between March 11th to 25th.

Also, feel free to share your comments on our Facebook page, or attend our next meeting.

 

8th street transit service plans

 

Meeting # 8 with Saskatoon Transit – Costs, Funding, Upgrades, and Communication!

Every month, three members of the Bus Riders of Saskatoon meet with representatives from Saskatoon Transit.  This enables us to ask questions about our transit system, understand ongoing changes, and propose solutions to improve our public transportation. Read the minutes for the meeting here: Meeting #8 – May 13 2015

This month, there were several issues including the cost of a perfectly running Saskatoon transit system, funding strategies for Saskatoon Transit, upgrades to the Confederation bus stop, communication with bus riders and concerned citizens, and the status of bus shelters.

The Bus Riders of Saskatoon wanted to know what what costs were included to calculate a perfectly running transit system.  We were told that included only current operation costs, and it did not include snow clearing or waste receptacles. It did focus on the age of buses and the number of buses to mechanics.  They hope to have the report by June or July.

The federal government promised more funding for transit using a P3 strategy if they were re-elected. Our group was curious as to how Saskatoon Transit receives funding.  They noted that the new bus barn is a P3 endeavour.  They also lease their tires.

For those of you who use the Confederation bus stop between the Superstore and the Confederation Mall, you might have noticed that the shelter was removed again this year.  Upgrades will start May 19th.  They plan to make a larger platform, to replace the shelter, and to add a ramp for access to the Superstore.  (If you’ve made that trip in an icy winter weather, or after a rain, I’m sure you’ll be happy about this change!) They also hope to add seating through the summer.

The City of Saskatoon is forming an Active Transportation Plan.  They will have another consultation on May 23 from 10 am to 4 pm at River Landing.  Click here for more information.

Saskatoon Transit will give names to all of their stops in the coming months.  This will be useful for their ITS system, which will call out names for every stop. It was suggested that the bus stops should have a sticker to note the times that buses can be expected.  This item will be addressed again in a future meeting.

While many of our riders feel that the shelters are too small, Saskatoon Transit noted that this might not change soon.  Right of way is a concern, and utilities restricts the installation of residential shelters.

The next meeting will be next month.  If you would like to attend, our group would like you to attend one of our Bus Riders of Saskatoon meetings in the three months prior to the Saskatoon Transit meeting.  We hope that you can!  Your ideas, experience, and friendly personality are welcome!

Meeting with Saskatoon Transit #7

Three Bus Riders of Saskatoon, Sarina, Mandy, and Dianne, met with representative of the Saskatoon Transit for Meeting #7.  The Interim Assistant Director, the Marketing Manager, and two Operations Superintendents were able to attend the meeting.

During the April 12, 2015  Bus Riders of Saskatoon meeting, a member questioned the usefulness of these meetings.  Prior to the creation of the Bus Riders of Saskatoon, interested individuals had previously met with Saskatoon Transit in suggest to improvements for Saskatoon’s public transportation.

We have been told that there Saskatoon Transit does not have a formal process in place for collecting information gathered at these monthly meetings. However, having Saskatoon Transit managers and any other relevant staff present to hear our feedback first hand allows them to fit them directly into their work plan. This has included the discussion of strollers on buses, and additional training for staff.  The Bus Riders of Saskatoon have also been told that Saskatoon Transit is a slow moving ship.  This indicates that change is slow to happen.  For example, suggestions from an earlier meeting held with Saskatoon Transit regarding beautification of bus shelters will occur this summer.  Art has been designed for bus shelters downtown.

So, to all of our members, whether through Facebook, our Gmail group, or anyone else who supports our cause through word-of-mouth: Please keep providing suggestions for input at these meeting with Saskatoon Transit.  You can send an email to [email protected] or express yourself on Facebook.

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10 Days for Transit: April 14 – 24, 2015

What is it?

The 10 Days for Transit initiative by Bus Riders of Saskatoon, Better Transit YXE, the University of Saskatchewan Student’s UnionThe Partnership, and interested individuals is encouraging the people of Saskatoon to try our public transportation system. Between April 14 – 24, we ask “What would it take for you to ride the bus?”

Why?

Only 5 percent of people use public transit as their main method of moving around our city.  We want to create a strategy to understand what it will take to improve this statistic.

  • Can we improve this if people try our transit system as-is?
  • Are more bus routes necessary?
  • Would more frequent buses ease your transition?
  • Perhaps dedicated bus lanes?

How?

Share your suggestions on the 10 Days for Transit Facebook page, discuss your ideas and experiences through Twitter, and let us post your ideas on 10daysfortransit.ca, by sending us an email.

If you are a frequent bus rider, be on the look out for new riders and help them along their way!

Check out this video of a few new bus riders and their experience:

 

 

 

Minutes from Meeting #6 with Saskatoon Transit

Three of our member, (Sarina, Samuel, and Robert), met with Saskatoon Transit for the Bus Riders of Saskatoon Meeting #6.  It took place on March 11, 2015.

Among the topics discussed:

  • The Downtown Bus Mall
  • Signal Prioritization
  • Bus Service to North Industrial in the Future
  • Data Collection
  • The New Website
  • Snow Removal
  • Safety Protocols

These meetings are held each month. Three people from our group attend. Besides Sarina, who attends regularly to ensure institutional memory and compile minutes, these members change. If you would like to attend a meeting, the group asks that you first attend the Bus Rider of Saskatoon’s monthly meeting. For those who cannot attend, please email any concerns or ideas to [email protected].  They will be very much appreciated in our meetings with Saskatoon Transit.

The New Saskatoon Transit Webpage

The City of Saskatoon has launched a new website for Saskatoon Transit.

Particularly new is the addition of a Real Time Map, which allows a rider to track a bus on its route.  If you want to wait inside while the bus runs a few minutes late, you now have that luxury!  In order to access it through your smart phone, you’ll need to use a different process.   Saskatoon Transit has provided these instructions, with special instructions for mobile users in regards to data usage:

 To view the information you simply head to the “Stop Schedules and Departures” menu item in the mobile trip planner and put in your 4 digit stop number.  There’s also a link to find your stop number on the same page if you’re not sure of it.

The Real Time Map is only intended for desktop use as the feature has very heavy data usage.  Be cautious in regards to viewing the ‘moving bus’ map on a mobile device, unless users are connected to wifi.

Users are able to see the status of buses on the mobile trip planner menu without having to open up the ‘moving bus’ map.  The 4 digit stop numbers can be favorited by users by clicking on the star icon for quick future usage.

You can watch a video to get more details and instructions on this new feature.

Let us know in the comment section below how it’s working for you.   Also, let Saskatoon Transit know in a couple of different ways.  Phone, email, or drop in to their Customer Service Centre.  Or, sign up to be an ongoing part of their Engagement activities.  As always, feel free to give the Bus Riders of Saskatoon your opinions on our Facebook page, send an email to our group, or join us at our monthly meeting!

Robert Clipperton Encourages City Councillor Bus Use in Presentation to the Standing Committee on Transportation

On Monday, January 12th, the City of Saskatoon’s Standing Committee on Transportation held its meeting. Members of the Bus Riders of Saskatoon, including presenter Robert Clipperton, were there to express the views of our group.
We asked for members of the City’s Council to gain first hand experience on our buses, for the committee to research methods to gain new bus riders who have a choice in riding the bus, and for the Transit Advisory Committee to be established soon.  Read January 12, 2015 Presentation to the Standing Committee on Transportation for the full text.

Minutes from our Seventh Meeting, December 14, 2014

The Bus Riders of Saskatoon held its seventh meeting on Sunday, December 14th, 2014 at the Saskatoon Food Bank.  If you would like to know what happened at that meeting, please see: Minutes for Meeting Seven – Bus Riders of Saskatoon.  It includes updates on our Internal, External, and Online committees, as well as short term and long term goals.  There was also dicussion on how to categorize ongoing transit problems, ways to build upon motions from the motions made during the City of Saskatoon’s budget deliberations, and other initatives to further our group’s cause.