Lots of Detroit Transit in the News

It’s been a busy week for Detroit area transit. Here’s a rundown:

  • Wall Street Journal: Detroit’s Broken Buses Vex a Broke City: Bankruptcy Means Cold Waits, Hot Tempers for Residents in Need of a Ride 
    • “Bus lines, which have a daily ridership of 100,000, have been cut or curtailed in recent years. Aging, poorly maintained buses regularly conk out, leaving remaining ones so overcrowded they often blast through stops without taking on new passengers. Many days, nearly one-third of all buses don’t even make it out of their depots because of mechanical or staffing problems, according to transit advocates, union and city officials.”
  • Metro Times cover story: How Detroit ended up with the worst public transit
    • “Ask that question — why is public transportation here so unreliable? — and the finger-pointing begins: It’s the transit planners; there’s never enough funding; there’s not enough interest from the public; the divide between the suburbs and Detroit has made it near-impossible. Some bring up the General Motors streetcar conspiracy. Is there a smoking gun? Most would say no, that it’s an amalgam of these issues.”
  • metromode: Three Common Sense Solutions for Local Transit (That Metro Detroit Isn’t Doing)
    • “Imagine if that Ann Arbor fare card in her pocket did work in Detroit, and in Pontiac, and across all regional transportation systems. Imagine if all of those systems shared a single app with real time bus schedules. It’s possible. The single fare card concept has been under discussion at the Detroit Regional Transit Authority’s Providers Advisory Committee.”
  • Detroit News: Detroit looking at options for bus service
    • “The city is “investigating certain other restructuring alternatives” that could either place the city’s bus service under the purview of the Regional Transit Authority or outsource aspects or all of its operations. That’s according to Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr’s plan of adjustment filed in bankruptcy court last month.”
  • Detroit News: $6.3M dose of cold reality: Troy Transit Center sits empty amid dispute
    • “The center, which was completed last fall, remains closed to commuters because, according to a judge’s ruling, the city does not own the land upon which it was built. In the meantime, commuters who rely on the Amtrak train must use a freestanding shelter on the other side of the train tracks in Birmingham, which provides little protection from the elements.”
  • WDET news: Can Detroit use Mass Transit to Attract Big Business? Expert says Yes
    • Americans are riding public transportation in record numbers. A study released last week by the American Public Transportation Association reports that roughly 10.7 billion trips were taken last year…the highest quantity in almost six decades.