Thursday, June 26, 2008

The Wheels on the Bus Won't go West Anymore

OK Time for a good 'ol fashion smack down on a bad idea that is being discussed.


Long and short, the city and KAT are looking at killing off a few bus routed to save money. Why is this a problem you ask? They want to kill off the West Town Express and the Farragut Express. Hmm, on the outset one might say oh well the burbs don't really use the bus that much, so why worry, let it go, won't effect me.

Wrong. By removing these lines all Kat is doing is further dividing this city along socioeconomic lines. Much like what happened when 40 plowed though town, making it nearly impossible to get from gay street to Mechanicsville without a map and compass, killing off of the bus lines does nothing but encourage those in town to stay there and those out west to continue cutting themselves off from the rest of us.

(Make the buses like this)

Instead of reducing the number of trips available to people, the bus routes need to be increased, the equipment updated, and a serious effort to make public transit a viable alternative to everyone. The Farragut express already services 17,000 plus riders already this year, proving that there is a demand.

My wife has ridden the bus out to Cedar Bluff several times and has enjoyed it. I would ride it except the infrequency of trips mean I would be out at work 1 hour early (which doesn't seem like a good idea to me). Soon, though, I may not even have the option.

Let's increase the number of park and rides, lets paint the buses red, update the system, and make the timing more reliable (as that has been my wife's complaint). It's time for an increase in service to open up the city to everyone instead or sectioning us all off further. And believe me I know buses (yep that's my old man)

Write-In Spellings


ck said...

the problem is, the (worthless) county gov't and "low property taxes" farragut don't contribute anything to the KAT system, and the city can't directly subsidize any routes out of the city limits. KAT always is losing money on those routes, so of course they'll get axed first, regardless of ridership. even if we can't get a metro gov't put together, we need a comprehensive metro transit system that everybody helps pay for.

Mickey said...

The only KAT route I've used is the Farragut express, and those buses were always full of people going to and from the city for work on weekdays. In chatting up the drivers, we decided they should actually increase the number of stops serviced by the expresses.

At a time when people are rediscovering the value of mass transit...

Amelia said...

How does KAT expect to expand their business by cutting off routes just when more people are choosing the alternative of Kat to fuel costs with their own vehicles? You're right, this makes no sense to me. Unfortunately I go to work at a crazy hour and I live all the way in Halls, but I wish I had the option to use KAT and now they're making this option available to basically just downtown, as if that's the only part of Knoxville that exists or matters.

Anonymous said...

When I moved from Knoxville to Orlando in 2001, I had never been on a city bus.
After living in FL for 6 years and mainly using public transpo, I looked forward to checking out Knoxville from a bus when I moved back.

I tried twice, but after being stranded for an extra 2 hours due to delayed buses..I gave up.

I would love to try again sometime..but probably won't unless they significantly change their ways.

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