Cap-tivities with Javier!

Cap-tivities Issue 5 is equal parts groovy and spooky thanks to our javelina friend Javier! Though he considers the world his “home” and follows his favorite bands around the country in his VW bus, he spends most of his days in Austin and uses CapMetro to get around to protect Mother Earth.

Javi is getting ready for Halloween and bringing you along for the ride with a spooky color-by-number, a costume party cut-and-play, spider web mazes and so much more!

Are you ready for a “hallow” lot of fun? Click here to download Cap-tivities Issue 5!

Be sure to use #captivities and tag CapMetro on social media to share in the fun!

Facebook = Capital Metro

Twitter = @CapMetroATX

Instagram = @CapMetroATX

Check back next month for a new friend and even more fun activities!

Haunted Austin Bus Tour

Halloween looks pretty different this year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate with a little socially-distant spooky sightseeing! To help you get in the hallow-day spirit, we’ve created a haunted Austin bus tour that includes some of our city’s most ghostly locations.

We designed this list to help you visit haunted spots around Austin that may be along your usual route, but you can also use our Trip Planner to outline a haunted Austin bus tour of your own. Simply enter your starting point and add any stops from our list that pique your interest!

Beware: some of these locations may be too spooky to enter! To keep you safe from supernatural and COVID-19 related terrors that may be hiding out, this tour is intended to take place outside the haunts.

Grab your mask, your CapMetro App and your bravest friend and prepare for a scare (or eight)!

West Campus

Littlefield Home

302 W 24th St, Austin, TX 78712

Closest CapMetro Stop ID: 599 and 5864

Served by routes: 1, 3, 19, 20, 801, 803

About this spooky spot: Located on the UT Campus, the Littlefield House is one of the most haunted spots in Austin and in academia! Civil War veteran George Littlefield and his wife Alice, for whom the home was built in 1893, were generous donors of the university. Reports claim that Alice can be heard rattling about the home and even playing piano. While some may find the hauntings spooky, some members of the university revere Alice as “guardian angel.”

Austin’s Inn at Pearl Street

1809 Pearl St, Austin, TX 78701

Closest CapMetro Stop ID: 498

Served by routes: 1, 3, 19, 20, 642

About this spooky spot: This vintage boutique hotel has it all: charming ambiance, ghost hauntings, and…bees? Well, not anymore, but the 1914-built Austin’s Inn at Pearl Street was renovated in 1993 when, according to the website, one of the “largest bee colonies ever found in a private residence” was discovered in the walls of the home. Whether or not you find bee removal spooky, guests of the inn have reported hauntings including apparitions, music and other noises from vacant rooms, flickering lights and a lingering feeling of being watched.

Downtown

The Paramount

713 Congress Ave, Austin, TX 78701

Closest CapMetro Stop ID: 6315

Served by routes: 2, 6, 7, 10

About this spooky spot: Old theatres have a tendency to be haunted (this isn’t even the only one on our list!), and The Paramount hosts its own spooky cast of spirits. The 105-year-old theatre is the home to at least three ghosts, including a woman in a white dress searching for her soldier husband, an elderly gentleman smoking a cigar in the left opera box and a candy-loving former projectionist of the theatre who died during a 2000 showing of “Casablanca.”

The Driskill

604 Brazos St, Austin, TX 78701

Closest CapMetro Stop ID: 5937

Served by routes: 2, 4, 6, 7, 10

About this spooky spot: Elegant downtown Austin hotel The Driskill is said to be one of the most haunted hotels in Texas. The supernatural rumors range from ghost brides walking the halls, a painting of a child that bears a sinister presence and even the spirit of the hotel’s own Jesse Driskill. The glamorous hotel is also said to have been President Lyndon B. Johnson’s favorite place in Austin and guests have claimed to see he and Lady Bird’s ghosts dancing in the ballroom.

Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill

303 Red River St, Austin, TX 78701

Closest CapMetro Stop ID: 4175 (Westbound) and 995 (Eastbound)

Served by route: 17

About this spooky spot: If you’d prefer to merge happy hour with the haunting hour, Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill is the spooky spot for you. The current restaurant resides in one of the oldest buildings in Austin and is said to be haunted by the spirits of flood victims from early 1900s. These old school ghouls have a sense of humor and have been reported to tap guests on the shoulder and cause other mayhem around the restaurant.

East Austin

Oakwood Cemetery Annex

1601 Navasota St, Austin, TX 78702

Closest CapMetro Stop ID: 4183

Served by route: 18

About this spooky spot: No ghost tour is complete without a cemetery! Oakwood Cemetery, Austin’s oldest city-owned cemetery, holds a number of famous graves including one of the few survivors of the Alamo, 1880s Austin city marshal Ben Thompson and victims of the Servant Girl Annihilator, one of America’s first serial killers. Aside from its notable residents, many believe that some who are buried at Oakwood Cemetery haven’t quite moved on from this world and haunt the burial grounds.

CapMetro Office

2910 E 5th St, Austin, TX 78702

Closest CapMetro Stop ID: 1368

Served by routes: 4, 300

About this spooky spot: If you’re friends with an old Austin native, you may have heard the story behind our own Capital Metro office building on the east side. In 1931, Austin’s municipal abattoir – AKA slaughterhouse – opened in the very spot where our office now sits at the corner of East 5th and Pleasant Valley. The building served as a modern and hygienic place for Austinites to bring livestock to be killed, inspected and prepared for sale. At the time, Austin’s abattoir was the largest in the United States!

South Austin

St. Edward’s University

3001 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX 78704

Closest CapMetro Stop ID: 5870

Served by route: 1, 801

About this spooky spot: St. Edward’s University is notorious for being one of the most haunted spots in Austin and St. Edward’s students and staff are notorious for sharing their close encounters with spirits from the other side! From a child spirit playing in the dorm rooms of Teresa Hall to the ghost of a hanged drama student haunting actors in the Mary Moody Northern Theatre, St. Edward’s lost souls are engaged members of the community, to say the least!

Which stop on our haunted Austin bus tour do you find most intriguing?

CapMetro is Your Free “Ride to Vote” on Election Day 2020

Deciding who to vote for isn’t always an easy task, but your ride to the polls should be. That’s why CapMetro offers free rides on Election Day, November 3!

To get your 24 hour pass to ride MetroBike for free on Election Day, enter the following codes in your BCycle App or at the kiosk.

Using the BCycle App:

  • Early Voting: EVOTE20
  • Election Day: 2020VOTE

Using a kiosk:

  • Early Voting: 3868320
  • Election Day: 868320

Each county provides a full list of polling locations, which you can find here: Travis County, Williamson County and Hays County. Follow our COVID-19 guidelines to ride safely to your nearest polling location. Don’t forget your mask!

Park & Watch Austin Drive-In Movie Series

Introducing Park & Watch!

We’ve teamed up with Do512 for a four-week drive-in movie series in October all across Austin! Each week Do512 and CapMetro will partner to host a drive-in movie at a different location around Austin. These will be a safe, fun way to get people out to enjoy the fall evenings and watch a classic film favorite.

How to Attend

Each week, Do512 will select winners at random for a free car slot at the drive-in. Winners will be notified via email and receive a reminder so they can plan their night out! Check out the links between each showing below to enter for your chance to win.

Safety Information

Do512 and CapMetro will be following all City of Austin COVID Safety Recommendations. Attendees will not be allowed to roam outside their cars except to use facilities and will be required to wear a mask when walking to and from.

Week One: October 9 | The Sandlot

Lakeline Park & Ride | 6:00 p.m.

Enter here for a chance to win a spot for The Sandlot showing!

Week Two: October 16 | Space Jam

Tech Ridge Park & Ride | 6:00 p.m.

Enter here for a chance to win a spot for Space Jam showing!

Week Three: October 23 | Coco

Location TBA | 6:00 p.m.

Enter here for a chance to win a spot for Coco showing!

Week Four: October 30 | The Addams Family

Long Center For The Performing Arts | 6:00 p.m.

Enter here for a chance to win a spot for The The Addams Family showing!

See How CapMetro Rides with Care During COVID-19

Just like getting you where you need to go, we are navigating COVID-19 with care. CapMetro has adapted to the pandemic with enhanced safety and cleaning measures to help you ride without adding extra stress to your trip. Find out more how we’re riding with care.

How CapMetro is addressing COVID-19 safety concerns:

  • Electrostatic cleaning. This advanced cleaning process sprays electrostatically charged mist throughout the vehicle to ensure surfaces are sanitized.
  • Physical distancing protocols. In addition to adding plexiglass around the operator and signage prompting riders to “skip a seat,” schedules have also been adjusted to increase service and to help reduce the number of riders per trip.
  • Cashless payment. The CapMetro App allows you to pay for passes with the in-app digital wallet or using Apple Pay or Google Pay without having to exchange physical money.
  • Masks for staff and riders. While we encourage you to always remember your mask when leaving the house, CapMetro has them available in case you forget. Face coverings are required for all riders and staff on CapMetro buses and trains.
  • Vinyl seat upgrades. In addition to our new cleaning technology, we are upgrading our seats from fabric covers to vinyl, making them easier to clean.
  • Crowded vehicle alerts. Coming soon, our Trip Planner feature on mobile and web will provide alerts for “Crowded Vehicles” (over 50% capacity) to help you plan a safe trip.

How you can ride safely during COVID-19:

  • Wear a mask when riding and waiting to ride*
  • Follow physical distancing measures by skipping a seat
  • Avoid riding at peak times catch an earlier or later trip when possible
  • Download the CapMetro App to use cashless payment for your passes
  • Stay at home if you’re feeling sick or experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19

*If you have a disability that affects your ability to wear a face covering, please contact Martin Kareithi, our program manager of accessible services, to request a reasonable modification. Call 512-389-7583 or email martin.kareithi@capmetro.org.

Click here to find more information about our COVID-19 response, along with up-to-date schedule changes. We look forward to seeing you on your next ride!

Cap-tivities with Saurio!

We’re celebrating back-to-school with a brand new issue of Cap-tivities! This month, our dinosaur stylish friend Saurio is bringing you dino-size fun with activities like a color-cut-play matching game, word puzzles and a tricky I Spy that will really test your eyes.

Saurio, a Shuvosaurus dinosaur from East Austin, will need your help getting around this issue of Cap-tivities because his short arms make it difficult to pick up the crayons!

Click here to download Cap-tivities Vol. 4

Be sure to use #captivities and tag CapMetro on social media to share in the fun!

Facebook = Capital Metro

Twitter = @CapMetroATX

Instagram = @CapMetroATX

Check back next month for a new friend and a Halloween-themed issue of Cap-tivities!

Llegando Mas Alto

Respondemos con CARE

La pandemia puso a prueba a Capital Metro y sacó lo mejor de nosotros. Adaptamos los niveles de servicio a las nuevas demandas para garantizar que las personas se sientan cómodas y seguras al viajar. Si bien la cantidad pasajeros se redujo hasta un 60%, ofrecimos casi 5 millones de viajes que permitieron que las personas lleguen a sus trabajos esenciales.

Nuestra prioridad fue garantizar la seguridad y el bienestar de nuestro personal y de nuestros clientes. Para ello, distribuimos más de 215 000 mascarillas, 65 000 guantes y cientos de galones de desinfectante para manos (¡tanto que ni siquiera podemos contarlo!).

Nuestro personal de oficina respondió a la nueva dinámica dando un paso adelante y colaborando. Mediante nuestro programa All Hands, el personal dedicó 13 146 horas a la limpieza de vehículos al mediodía, a la entrega de suministros de equipos de protección, a la asistencia con el control de temperatura y la instalación de carteles sobre el uso de mascarillas y el distanciamiento social.

Nos preocupamos por la comunidad

El impacto de la pandemia fue mayor en los más vulnerables de nuestra comunidad. Desde marzo, los conductores y los voluntarios del personal de CapMetro dedicaron más de 10 000 horas de servicio para repartir más de 600 000 comidas a nuestros vecinos más necesitados. Este programa es el resultado de nuestras sólidas alianzas con el Central Texas Food Bank, HEB, Good Apple y ATX Farmshare.

Como muchos de nosotros nos vimos obligados a trabajar y estudiar desde casa, el acceso a una infraestructura tecnológica sólida ha sido más importante que nunca. Para brindar un servicio de Internet confiable, utilizamos vehículos de MetroAccess en 10 comunidades de bajos ingresos para brindar wifi gratuito durante toda la primavera y todo el verano.

Vuelta al servicio

Con los cambios de servicios de agosto y a medida que CapMetro comenzó a reestablecer más servicios, tomamos todas las medidas para ofrecer una experiencia de transporte segura y positiva. Lo hicimos para lo siguiente:

  • Crear lugares seguros para el personal y los clientes.
  • Aplicar nuestros recursos de forma razonable y equitativa.
  • Recurrir a los datos para tomar decisiones.
  • Evaluar los resultados y adaptarnos.

Obtenga más información en CapMetro.org/COVID19.

Futuro eléctrico

Nuestra transformación a una flota completamente eléctrica comenzó a principios de este año con los primeros dos autobuses eléctricos en las calles del centro de Texas. Para fin de año, contaremos con 12 de ellos listos para usarse, incluidos los primeros dos autobuses eléctricos de 60 pies (los autobuses largos y articulados que ve en nuestras líneas de MetroRapid) en Texas.
También hemos hecho un gran progreso a la hora de convertir una parte de nuestras instalaciones al norte de Austin en un predio para autobuses eléctricos con espacio para 180.

Nuestros autobuses eléctricos han reducido las emisiones de CO2 en 17,5 toneladas y las emisiones de N2O en 39,9 libras. Eso equivale al carbono capturado por casi 30 acres de bosques en un año.

Project Connect: Un nuevo plan de tránsito para Austin y el centro de Texas

Después de años de planificación y de participación de la comunidad, la inversión inicial de Project Connect se someterá a votación en noviembre. Un proceso en equipo entre la junta de Capital Metro y el Concejo de la Ciudad de Austin dio como resultado una inversión inicial en Project Connect que expandiría la capacidad del tránsito y ofrecería más opciones para conectar a las personas, los vecindarios y los empleadores.

Puede enterarse sobre Project Connect en ProjectConnect.com.

Reaching Higher

Responding with CARE

The pandemic has tested Capital Metro and brought out our best. We adjusted service levels to match the new demand and to make sure people could feel comfortable and safe while riding. Though ridership dropped by as much as 60%, we’ve provided nearly 5 million trips that allowed people to get to their essential jobs.

Our priority has been to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our staff and our customers. To that end, we have distributed more than 215,000 masks; 65,000 gloves and hundreds of gallons of hand sanitizer (so much that we literally can’t count how much!).

Our office staff responded to the new dynamic by stepping up and pitching in. Through our All Hands program, staff has logged 13,146 hours of midday vehicle cleaning, protective equipment supply runs, temperature scan assistance and installation of mask and social distancing signage.

Caring for the Community

The pandemic’s impact has hit hardest the most vulnerable in our community. Since March, CapMetro operators and staff volunteers put in more than 10,000 hours of service to deliver more than 600,000 meals to our neighbors in need. This program is the result of our strong partnerships with the Central Texas Food Bank, HEB, Good Apple and ATX Farmshare.

As so many of us have been forced to work and study from home, access to strong technology infrastructure has never been so important. To bring connections to reliable internet service, we deployed MetroAccess vehicles to 10 low-income communities to provide free Wi-Fi throughout the spring and summer.

Return to Service

As CapMetro began to return more service to the streets with our August service changes, we took every measure to provide a safe and positive transit experience. The way we’ve done so is to:

  • Create safe places for staff and customers.
  • Apply our resources wisely and equitably.
  • Rely on data for decision-making.
  • Evaluate our results and adapt.

Learn more at CapMetro.org/COVID19.

Electric Future

Our conversion to an all-electric fleet got started earlier this year with the first two electric buses on the streets of Central Texas. By the end of the year, we’ll have 12 of them ready to go, including the first two 60-foot electric buses (the long, bendy buses you see on our MetroRapid lines) in Texas.

We have also made great progress converting a portion of our facility in North Austin into an electric bus yard with space for 180 buses.

Our electric buses have reduced CO2 emissions by 17.5 tons and N2O emissions by 39.9 pounds That’s equal to the carbon captured by nearly 30 acres of forests in a year!

Project Connect: A new transit plan for Austin and Central Texas

After years of planning and community engagement, Project Connect’s Initial Investment has been placed on the November ballot. A collaborative process between the Capital Metro board and the Austin City Council resulted in a proposed Initial Investment in Project Connect that would expand transit capacity and offer more options to link people, neighborhoods and employers.

You can follow along with Project Connect at ProjectConnect.com

All Aboard Any of the Doors

CapMetro is launching a new all-door boarding pilot that’s intended to speed up your trips and let our riders take advantage of contactless payment options.

Customers using the CapMetro App can board their bus through the rear door and scan their digital pass with new onboard validators.

The pilot starts Wednesday, September 30 and will be active on Route 20 and Route 300 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

We’ve had all-door boarding on our two MetroRapid routes since that service launched in 2014. But we have now begun to install the onboard validators on our MetroBus vehicles and will roll out the availability of all-door boarding moving forward.

The goal is to reduce wait times at each stop as customers board the bus and pay their fares or show their digital passes to the operator.