You’ve Asked … Here Are Our Answers

RevisionsYou’ve probably heard about the big changes we’re planning to put in place next June.

In fact, we know that you know about them because we’ve heard from a lot of you. And the great thing about receiving all that feedback is that it gives us a chance to make our proposal better.

Let’s take a look at some of the more common suggestions we’ve heard and our responses:

It’d really be great if Route 5 still served the Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center in the state complex near Lamar and 51st, can you make that happen?

Yes, we can, as a matter of fact. We had proposed to run Route 5 down Burnet and then Medical Parkway before turning to Lamar on 38th Street. Riders wanted to be able to access the Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center, and since we have other routes on Medical Parkway, we’ve agreed to change our proposal.

Speaking of Route 5, can you please keep it on Speedway? We’re used to that and like it the way it is.

That one, we can’t recommend. Not only does UT Shuttle Route 656 run on Speedway already, but frequent service would be available within a 5-minute walk on Duval (Route 7) and a 6-minute walk on Guadalupe (MetroRapid 801). The goal of these changes is to create a simple, efficient system that avoids route duplication. We also want to operate buses on major corridors for the most part, rather than neighborhood streets.

Farther north, you guys really need to keep service to the business park east of the Norwood Walmart, where the main post office is. Why are you trying to eliminate that route?

We’ve heard this one a lot, to be honest. That portion of the current Route 323 doesn’t have a whole lot of ridership, and that’s why we proposed to remove service. But enough of you have spoken out in favor of keeping service there that we are proposing to create the new Route 339 Tuscany. It would operate every 60 minutes starting from the Walmart, traveling through the Tuscany Business Park, past the H-E-B at Loyola and Springdale, before ending near the intersection of Tannehill and Webberville in East Austin.

None of these revisions we’re proposing can cause the plan to go over budget, however. And that means we would have to balance the costs of this new service by removing the proposed extension of Route 323 to Far West. Instead, the new proposal would end that route at Northcross Shopping Center, and Far West would be served by Route 19. Continue reading “You’ve Asked … Here Are Our Answers”

Capital Metro Board Approves Transit System Overhaul

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Capital Metro’s board of directors today approved the agency’s Connections 2025 draft transit plan, allowing the agency to move forward with a bold, new vision for its transit system. Some of the key elements of the new plan involve creating a more frequent, reliable and connected network of services.

In response to feedback from thousands of people around Central Texas, Capital Metro’s updated network will take a frequency-first approach, tripling the number of bus routes running every 15 minutes or better. The agency follows industry peers TriMet in Portland, Sound Transit in Seattle, Denver Metro and Houston Metro by investing in key corridors to build core frequent service and ridership, while reducing waiting times.

Capital Metro’s new plan is designed to improve the rider experience – creating a 24/7 transit system that will see expanded MetroExpress and MetroRapid service, and more east-west options.

“Today, our board showed its dedication to improving transportation in Central Texas through smart planning,” said Capital Metro President/CEO Linda Watson. “Major investments to build a better bus network will kick-off in 2018, and will continue paying off over the next 10 years. Austin desperately needs more mobility options, and this plan delivers the type of innovation and services people want.”

FEATURES OF THE NEW NETWORK:

  • 2 fare types (Local and Commuter)
  • 4 MetroRapid routes (running every 7-15 minutes)
  • 13 Frequent Local routes (running every 15 minutes)
  • 23 Local routes (running every 30 minutes)
  • 4 downtown circulator routes
  • 6 UT Shuttles
  • 8 Express routes

Continue reading “Capital Metro Board Approves Transit System Overhaul”

Connections 2025 Final Work Session This Friday

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Connections 2025, Capital Metro’s study to rethink transit, has been underway for over a year and is nearing the finish line. This week, our team will talk with the board of directors at a final work session on Friday, Feb. 17. After that, the board will vote on the Final Transit Plan at their monthly board meeting on Feb. 27.

To date, we’ve met with over 100 organizations, participated in 125 community meetings with nearly 4,000 attendees, and received 6,500 survey responses. On top of that, the Connections 2025 Draft Transit Plan has received support from these organizations:

  • Downtown Austin Alliance
  • Rocky Mountain Institute
  • Urban Transportation Commission
  • AURA
  • Alliance for Public Transportation in Austin
  • Austin Chamber of Commerce
  • Vision Zero
  • Pedestrian Advisory Council
  • Bicycle Advisory Committee
  • Downtown Commission
  • Zipcar

Continue reading “Connections 2025 Final Work Session This Friday”

Connections 2025 – January Update

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This week, the Capital Metro board of directors took a deep dive into the numbers of our Connections 2025 study. On Monday, we reviewed the financial process, along with operating and capital costs at a special work session. Missed the meeting? Check out the presentation or view the meeting video recording online.

What’s new?

Timeline change to February
 
In order to review more financial data and additional details on the proposed innovation zones, the board has extended the study timeline to include a final work session on Feb. 17. The final Connections 2025 plan will be voted on at next month’s board meeting on Feb. 27. As always, board meetings are open to the public and can be streamed online.
Capital Metro Board of Directors – Work Session
February 17
Capital Metro Board of Directors – Action Item for Approval
February 27
Capital Metro
2nd Floor Board Room
2910 E. 5th St
Austin, TX 78702

Connections 2025: What about MetroRail?

This is the 5th blog post in our week-long series about Connections 2025. We’ve heard your burning questions and have answers to your top questions.  

Day 5 – Question: What about MetroRail?

The Connections 2025 vision for MetroRail is to serve as one of two components in the “Rapid Transit” category of service (the other being I-35 BRT service in dedicated express lanes). “Rapid Transit” routes provide frequent, high-capacity transit with limited-stop regional transit service that also serves as an integral part of the all-day, all-week core network. These types of services operate on dedicated right-of-way and can provide guaranteed, congestion-proof travel times to, from and between destinations throughout the Capital Metro service area. Continue reading “Connections 2025: What about MetroRail?”