Monday, December 18, 2006

NJ Transit to study bus routes

Newark NJ - After 24 years, NJ Transit is finally going to take a look at it's routes according to a news report found in The Jersey Journal.

While only looking at 5 counties, it's a start and something that is long overdue. Just about every transit system in North America needs to do such a study so that the system can be adjusted to changed ridership and demographic patterns.

The one thing I wish to comment on specifically on this story is that this study should have been an ongoing process from day 1. Too many systems have legacy routes that haul few people today but have always been around. By continually keeping after the routes and ridership patterns, this particular study wouldn't have needed to be done.

Public transit usually scores poorly when it comes to quickly adjusting to ridership trends. Waiting 24 years literally means that NJ Transit will need to do a major overhaul of the route structure. Ridership and demographics of the area should be, a minimum, reviewed at least once every 5 years to keep the entire route structure somewhat on track with the population.

While NJ Transit should get a Lance for waiting 24 years to do what they should have been doing all along, I'll be nice and award them the Laurel for finally recognizing that they need to work on the routes and started the ball rolling with the long overdue study of the routes.

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