Yay! AC Transit is getting rid of my bus stop

17 Aug

In March, I wrote about the 30th Street northbound 51A bus stop that is the closest bus stop to my home. Though it is incredibly convenient to me, I almost never get off of the bus there because the stop is very redundant – there’s a stop half a block before it and another a block before that one. Those two stops are heavily used but my sad bus stop is only sparsely used. Since I know that the bus pulling over just for me to get off adds time to its trip, I get off a half block early and walk.

I wrote in that post that I wanted AC Transit to get rid of the stop:

Why? Well, a couple years back AC Transit did a thorough study on the 51 line. They found that the 51 was so slow because it spends only 50% of its time actually moving, while 20% is spent in dwell time (stopped at a bus stop) and 30% is spent in delays (i.e. stuck in traffic). As I wrote back in 2009, one of the major causes of delay is bus stop spacing:

If you’ve ridden the 51, I’m sure you’ve noticed that the bus stops are incredibly close together. It seems that every time I take it down Broadway, we stop at every block, which of course takes forever and makes me crazy. According to ACT, the ideal amount of space between bus stops is 800-1300 feet, yet on the 51 line, 87 bus stops (more than half of the stops) are less than 800 feet from the next stop. This slows the whole route down because pulling over, picking up passengers, and getting back into traffic at all of these stops takes a long time.

So you can imagine how happy I was when on my way home from work yesterday I saw this:

The best part is that this stop removal is part of a larger service change on the 51A and 51B (as well as several other lines). So my guess is that AC Transit is removing several redundant and sparsely used stops along the route. This should speed up the buses, improve reliability, and save money.

I looked on AC Transit’s website and couldn’t find a list of the bus stops that are being removed so I’m hoping you can help crowd source this information. I know that Living in the O readers live all over Oakland, and some even hail from Berkeley and Alameda. So take a couple minutes and survey your nearest portion of the 51A/B and report back on any stops that are being removed. (And if there are any AC Transit staff who have a full list, it would be great if you could share that.)

In the meantime, let’s hope the stop at Fulton and Durant – which several readers nominated as the worst 51 bus stop in the comments on my previous post – gets eliminated.

8 Responses to “Yay! AC Transit is getting rid of my bus stop”

  1. Aaron Priven August 19, 2011 at 12:41 pm #

    Here’s the list of 51A and 51B stop removals (at least, the ones I printed bag decals for).

    RS 53455 Broadway:Whitmore St (45th St) 7 51A,651,660,662,682,CB, 851
    RS 54446 Bancroft Way:Bowditch St 7 49,51B,52,604,605,851,F
    RS 55359 Broadway:Lincoln Av [Alameda] 2 51A,851
    RS 55378 Santa Clara Av:9th St 3 51A,314,O
    RS 55502 University Av:Milvia St 6 25,51B,52,604,800,FS
    RS 55521 Durant Av:Bowditch St 5 49,51B,604,605,851
    RS 56444 Broadway:29th St 3 51A,651,851
    RS 56514 Broadway:Lincoln Av 2 51A,851
    RS 56558 Santa Clara Av:9th St 3 51A,314,O
    RS 56633 Broadway:45th St 7 51A,651,660,662,682,CB, 851
    RS 58822 University Av:Milvia St 6 51B,52,88,604,800,FS
    RS 58886 Durant Av:Fulton St 5 1,49,51B,604,605
    RS 59339 Broadway:30th St 3 51A,651,851

    In the same vein, the 1R will be stopping at 8th Ave. instead of 5th and 10th aves., will stop at 23rd Ave. instead of 26th Ave., and also will no longer stop on E. 14th St. at Dolores or Parrott in San Leandro.

    • Rebecca Saltzman (aka Becks) August 19, 2011 at 12:47 pm #

      Thanks so much Aaron! Glad to hear that the Durant and Fulton stop is being removed.

    • Eric Panzer August 22, 2011 at 1:27 pm #

      At a whopping 450ft from the one immediately before it, I’d say that the Bancroft and Dana stop for the 1 and 51B is another contender for removal. The shelter that’s there can be transplanted to a stop that truly deserves it.

      Either way, I’m super psyched to see the Fulton:Durant stop going the way of the Dodo bird.

  2. Brian December 6, 2011 at 10:08 am #

    Beginning Dec 18, the 51A won’t stop anymore at Broadway & 19th. What a nice holiday treat.

    • Rebecca Saltzman (aka Becks) December 6, 2011 at 10:13 am #

      You mean traveling north? Because I don’t think it ever stopped at Broadway and 19th going south. I think getting rid of that stop makes sense.

      • Brian December 8, 2011 at 11:14 am #

        Yeah, I meant north.

  3. Marc / berkeley December 8, 2011 at 8:21 am #

    Wait a sec, if the bus never stopped here to begin with, why is removing a given bus stop going to save the ridership any more time than it does now? The buses never stop there to begin with, ergo no more time saved by removing it. It just reduces options for the ridership.

    By that logic, why have buses at all, if there isn’t stops for people to access those buses?

    I find the logic in justifying these route changes to be kind of twisted.

    • Rebecca Saltzman (aka Becks) December 8, 2011 at 9:42 am #

      The buses often used to stop at these now removed stops, but usually just for one person. The time it takes to pull over, let a person off (or on) and move back into traffic can be significant, especially when added up throughout the route. Removing stops allows the buses to better stick to their schedules. I’ve noticed a huge improvement in reliability since the stops have been removed.

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