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SXSWPanelPickerCalling all Austinites and SXSW enthusiasts: we need your help! We are partnering with Local Motors and HaCon to bring a one-of-a-kind panel to our city in March – but we’ll need your vote in order to make it happen!

Our panel, The Revolution of Transit Innovation, will feature three panelists: Dan Dawson, Vice President of Marketing and Communications at Capital Metro, Matthew Lesh, Director of Mobility Systems at Local Motors, and Michael Frankenburg, managing partner with German-based HaCon.

olli[2]A big topic of conversation will be our friend Olli, who just might be the future of autonomous buses. Developed by Local Motors, this self-driving vehicle is both sensible and stylish. See what Olli’s all about and even get in touch through the website.

Each of the three panelists will also offer a three-dimensional view of transit technologies. Mr. Dawson will discuss current and future plans, such as first- and last-mile integration into the app to help riders navigate to and from bus stops.

Mr. Lesh will discuss which current and future technologies are being employed (such as solar panels to power up to eight battery-operated buses per day). He will also discuss the future of autonomous buses, which is where Olli comes in.

Mr. Frankenburg of Germany-based HaCon will discuss the issue from an international perspective. He will examine how the U.S. can implement the advanced transit technology used by European cities. Beverly Silas, Capital Metro board member and founder of Silas & Associates, will moderate the panel.

We’re consistently searching for ways to innovate public transportation, both in the short- and long-term. Recently, we’ve partnered with technology groups to implement solutions – solutions that aim to attract more riders. In addition to our cutting-edge app, we also plan to introduce new Traveler Tools, which will help innovate and improve the Austin transit system.

With Austin’s abundance of technologically advanced millennials, this capitol city is the picture of innovation. When it comes to developing mass transit in this fast-growing metro area, the bar is set just as high. While many young people agree that a solution must be found to the city’s traffic problem, they also agree that it must be done in new and innovative ways.

As residents of a fast-growing city, we all have a stake in this. We all have something to learn from these panelists about the past, present, and future of Capital Metro – and the revolution of transit innovation.

In order to make this panel happen, we need Austinites and SXSW enthusiasts and fans from around the country to cast their votes. Learn more & vote: http://bit.ly/2bA5Rew.

We’ll see you at SXSW!

backgroun1

As Central Texas grows, so does its transit needs, and the expectations of Capital Metro’s riders. In an effort to address traffic congestion and public demand for more mobility choices, we’ve spent the past year looking at every aspect of our bus system to see where improvements could be made. The result: Connections 2025, an in-depth plan designed to act as a road map for supporting the region’s transportation needs over the next 10 years.

Capture3.1Earlier this year, we talked with thousands of people at open houses, community meetings and special events. We also did a survey that more than 5,000 of you took, telling us what kind of bus service was most important to you. We heard you loud and clear that – overwhelmingly – you want more frequency on key corridors. You also told us you wanted an easier experience, whether it be transferring from one service to another, or better choices for east-west travel.

See draft maps at the bottom of this blog post, or visit Connections2025.org to view our interactive map and share your feedback!

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Wednesday, August 17, is national Thrift Shop Day, so we wanted to share some of our favorite thrift stores and how to get there using MetroRapid – just in time for some affordable and stylish back-to-school shopping!

Uncommon ObjectsThrift1

Located on South Congress, this is a great place to find one-of-a-kind gifts and conversation piece home décor. Take Route 801 to the SoCo Station, shop for some not-so-common vintage finds, then grab a bite to eat and do some more shopping on SoCo.

Photo Credit: Uncommon Objects Instagram  

Feathers BoutiqueThrift2

For the fashionistas out there, Feathers Boutique offers a great selection of high-end vintage women’s clothing and jewelry. They also have their own line of “Feathers Originals,” which are repurposed vintage finds, so you just may find a floral silk kimono that was once a scarf. Feathers Boutique is also a quick trip from downtown to the SoCo Station on Route 801.

Photo Credit: FeatherBoutiqueVintage.com      

Room Service VintageThrift3

If you need some unique furniture to dress up your new pad, look no further than Room Service Vintage on North Loop at Avenue F, an easy ride up from downtown on Route 803. You’ll find some gently-used furniture that is oh-so-much cooler than your Ikea Malm collection.

Photo Credit: Room Service Vintage Instagram  

Still in StyleThrift4

For those who want to feel glamorous while they thrift, take Route 803 to the Justin Station and it’s a short walk to Still in Style, where you’ll find a pretty setup much more like an upscale boutique than a thrift store. It’s a great place to find new pieces to add to your chic office or internship wardrobe.

Photo Credit: Still in Style Facebook Account

app1What’s up with the new CapMetro App version? You’ll notice redesigned Trip Planner and Next Departure tools and some other new features:

Follow Your Trip

Unfamiliar with your bus route? After planning your trip, click current position to view your location on the map—follow yourself while you’re riding the bus.

New Maps

More maps than ever! You can now drop a pin, filter by Local, MetroRapid and MetroRail options nearby, or choose points of interest in your area including attractions, education and housing.

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packedtrainA recent online opinion piece on Forbes.com discussed perceived drawbacks to commuter rail as a public transportation service, with a focus on MetroRail, which included an unfair and derogatory headline. We welcome input and inquiries from our customers, the community and journalists, as it provides Capital Metro with new perspectives on the range of services the agency provides. The thought and energy that go into the feedback we receive is remarkable and reflective of our community’s intelligence and thoroughness. There is some question as to the thoroughness of the Forbes.com post, however, and we would like to highlight a few things related to MetroRail and how the service works as a catalyst for new and exciting development in the region.

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It’s almost here – a draft transit plan!

What we’ve heard

We have been busy reviewing the system and listening to you, our community, about how to improve Capital Metro. The Transit Priorities Survey we hosted on Connections2025.org from May 25 through June 24, received more than 500 responses. In it, you let us know your priorities given the reality of limited funding.

So what did we hear?  87% voted for improving frequency (more service, more often on key corridors) over wider coverage within Capital Metro’s service area (service to more destinations, less often). This information, combined with the input we’ve received from riders and community members throughout this process, helps guide us as we draft our new transit network. Open houses will continue in September. Thanks for taking the time to shape the future of transit in Central Texas. Visit Connections2025.org to view the full survey results!

graphic Continue Reading »

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Soon the CapMetro App will feature new, robust tools to help you plan your next bus or rail trip.

The update includes redesigned Trip Planner and Next Departure tools, and more.

Preview some of these new features now.

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