|Proposal for Core Network, July 2017|
(list of corridors added to graphic)
WHEREAS, Salem Area Mass Transit District, hereafter referred to as “District,” recognizes the need to establish a Core Network of bus service corridors in Salem and Keizer that represents the highest priority for service.So this looks like the start of a greater commitment to frequent service corridors and something that could easily grow into the start of one or more Bus Rapid Transit lines.
WHEREAS, the District will ensure riders, residents, developers, businesses, and municipal planning organizations know where the District plans to invest the most in transit service.
WHEREAS, the District’s routes serving the corridors of the Core Network may change over time. Service along these corridors will be maintained and prioritized, both in the case of service reductions and service expansions
There's not a whole lot of background in the Staff Report, so it's not clear how this relates to the service redesign of a couple years back or if it is growing out of some other planning process. (If you follow Cherriots closely, you will know more!)
In any case, it looks promising, especially the "Center and Marion Street Bridges" part!
The Board is also looking at a couple of cancellations.
One is the Grand Ronde Express, which the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, who provides most of the funding, put out for bid, and Cherriots declined to renew their bid to operate it. Apparently it started as something mainly for employee commutes to the Casino, but cheap gas put a dent in that. Cherriots found that they were subsidizing about 40% of the cost, and decided that it was not sustainable.
|Airport Road Park and Ride, Route 15x to be cancelled|
This could be shortsighted!
The Staff Report, however, give no ridership data, and it is not clear how much commute traffic and how many parking cars this program was taking out of the downtown area.
In the Q3 "Performance Report," it looks like in January, February, and March it averaged about 128 boardings per day. By comparison the West Salem Connector had 58/day, the Wilsonville Express had 137/day, and corridors like Market, Lancaster, Commercial/River Road well over 1,000/day.
So maybe this Airport route was not high-performing, either.
Anyway, no great conclusions here, but something to watch and to see if something new and more effective is programmed as a result of the new funding the Legislature passed as well as new conversations arising out of the City's forthcoming transit committee.
The Salem Area Mass Transit District Board of Directors meets Thursday the 27th, at 6:30pm, in Courthouse Square, the Senator Hearing Room, 555 Court St NE.