Bus Stop Optimization
The Maryland Department of Transportation’s Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) is dedicated to providing safe, efficient, and reliable transit service. The new BaltimoreLink transit network redesign includes optimizing the bus stop network to improve our customers’ travel experience. For the Summer 2017 service change occurring on 18 de junio de 2017 (BaltimoreLink), the following links provide a list of bus stops proposed for consolidation broken down by either Stop ID, Street Name, or Route Number:
- Proposed Bus Stops for Consolidation Organized by ID Number
PDF Version l Word Version
- Proposed Bus Stops for Consolidation Organized by Street Name
PDF Version l Word Version
- Proposed Bus Stops for Consolidation Organized by Route Number
PDF Version l Word Version
Through this optimization analysis process, it was determined that there is no loss of coverage within one quarter-mile of all existing bus stops, with 99% of the coverage area retained. The remaining areas were in less dense, rural locations where bus stop placement is on an “as-needed” basis.
What is Bus Stop Optimization?
Bus stop optimization is an on-going process to analyze the placement and design of all bus stops in the core bus network, and includes the following actions:
- Consolidating (removing) existing, redundant bus stops,
- Adding new stops where needed, and
- Relocating existing stops for safety and operational improvements.
Why Consolidate Bus Stops?
To improve the quality and reliability of bus service, over 5,000 bus stops in the Baltimore service region were analyzed based on their spacing relative to adjacent bus stops. Through this process, it was determined that some bus stops could be removed while still providing adequate access to our riders. Strategically removing bus stops which are unsafe, used by very few people, or close to other stops will improve the riders’ experience, either by faster trip times or improvements to the existing stops.
At the same time, the MTA recognizes that reducing the number of stops may impact some of our senior riders and riders with disabilities. The MTA is committed to ensuring the BaltimoreLink transit network is accessible and easy-to-use for everyone and incorporates rider feedback to identify bus stops that should remain in the network.
How did the MTA decide which stops to consolidate?
Each bus stop was examined individually as well as sequentially along current bus routes. Several factors were considered when deciding whether to retain or consolidate an existing MTA bus stop:
- Preserve Transfer Points: Bus stops have been retained where a bus route connects with another bus route, Light Rail, Metro Subway, Commuter Bus and MARC Train station. These stops serve as the backbone of an inter-connected transit network and the foundation of BaltimoreLink.
- Support Trip Generators: Stops located near schools and universities, healthcare facilities, housing, and services for people with disabilities and senior citizens, large employers, community centers, and other major points of interest were taken into consideration. Efforts were made to retain these stops even though they may not meet the stop spacing or utilization guidelines.
- Balance Spacing and Distance: Bus stops should be located close enough so that riders do not have to travel long distances to reach their stop, but at the same time, not too close so that the bus can operate quickly and efficiently. Too many stops can slow down the bus and make it late and unreliable. Spacing guidelines are established based on the density of people and jobs in an area. A stop every few blocks downtown is acceptable, but not in a suburban neighborhood. In general, the MTA will only eliminate stops that are less than one quarter-mile (approximately 1,300 feet) of another stop, so even after these stops have been removed, riders will not need to walk more than 3 to 5 blocks to catch their bus.
- Analyze Utilization Data and Site Conditions: Bus stops which experience very low utilization (a total of 10 or fewer daily users getting on and off the bus) have been proposed for elimination when the spacing guidelines allowed for it. For bus stops with higher utilization that were proposed to be removed, adjacent stops were examined to verify that they could handle the increased pedestrian traffic and when justified, the placement of passenger amenities such as shelters.
In addition to the four factors identified above, the optimization process noted accessibility and pedestrian safety concerns, such as bus stops which are difficult to reach or located in unsafe conditions. While analyzing transfer points, trip generators, spacing, and stop utilization, pedestrian safety considerations helped determine which stops were to be retained and which stops should be candidates to be consolidated. Aspects of pedestrian safety include the presence of sidewalks, crosswalks, and street lighting.
How to Recognize a Bus Stop Proposed for Consolidation:
Bus stops proposed for consolidation will have rider notices installed on the sign pole.
What Can I Do to Provide Comments on the Bus Stop Optimization Process?
Modifications to the bus stop network occur three times per year in conjunction with MTA’s service changes, typically in February, June, and September. There are several ways to provide comments on the proposed bus stop optimization listed at the top of the page, as well as other requests to add, relocate, or remove bus stops.
- Call 410-454-1929 and leave a message. Outside the comment period, please call 410-539-5000 as the bus stop modifications phone number is only monitored during optimization comment periods.
- Email the BusStopModification@mta.maryland.gov
- Mail your comments to:
MTA Attn: Bus Stop Modifications, OCCR 3rd Floor
6 St. Paul Street, Baltimore, MD 21202
- Use this online form (Click Here)
Please be sure to include the stop identification number, street the bus stop is located on, as well as the nearest intersecting street, and the reason(s) for your comment or request.
What Determines Where New Bus Stops Are Placed or Relocated?
The process to add new bus stops to the network is elaborate and complex, involving collaboration between many MTA departments as well as other agencies and stakeholders. The location and placement of new bus stops is first determined by the demand and whether the request falls in line with MTA’s bus stop spacing guidelines. Acceptable site conditions must exist before the process can move forward, which includes accessibility, safety, and operational assessments of the area. All new and relocated bus stops have to be constructed to be compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) so they are accessible and usable by all riders.
Adding or relocating a bus stop is a complex process that involves collaboration between many parties, both within the MTA as well as other entities, such as the Baltimore City Department of Transportation (DOT) and Parking Authority of Baltimore City (PABC) and stakeholders, such as elected officials, residents, and businesses. Adjoining property/business owners are notified in advance so that questions can be answered and comments addressed before any final decisions are rendered.
All of the proposed relocated bus stops for Summer 2017 involve operational efficiencies related to Transit Signal Priority (TSP), a technology that will be implemented as part of BaltimoreLink. For details on TSP and other infrastructure improvements, please visit http://baltimorelink.com/baltimorelink-basics/infrastructure.
Posted: 13 de abril de 2017