Increased fares for COTA and Lorain County

7 01 2012

A new year brings the occasional fare increase.  This year we find increases at COTA and Lorain County Transit.  Fares will go from $1.75 to $2.00 for a local bus ride.  In Lorain County, the fares will go up to $2.85, which I believe is the highest in the state for routed bus service.  Unfortunately, it looks like more increases for upcoming years.

For good news, there is expanded service for Greater Cleveland RTA and day passes available for Greater Dayton RTA.

Also, we have created a permanent (and hopefully updated) list of fares across the state.

Happy belated New Year!


Updates on COTA transit center and TARTA votes

7 08 2011

I thought I would write an post updating several stories we have been following on Twitter (@ohiotransitnews).

1. It is looking like the previously proposed large transit center to move riders off Broad and High Streets, will not happen.  The first drawback to the proposal came when a COTA study revealed that the transit center probably would not diminish bus congestion downtown and some riders would be required to walk more.  After four public meetings, a new $20 million transit center does not look likely, but COTA will recommend to its board a bus routing plan for downtown sometime this fall.  This article says that that they are likely to promote moving some of the buses off High Street to Front Street.

2. Sylvania Township will not put a referendum to remove the township from TARTA service on the November ballot.  The law allowing individual community members to withdraw from the transit authority (in the past the other members had to agree to allow another member to leave), will not go into effect until the end of September.  Legal council determined that taking action before the law was in place could run into trouble.

Dump the Pump Day has Come and Gone

22 06 2011

From my following of transit news, probably Dump the Pump Day (June 16th) is the busiest news story day of the year.  Now that the day has long passed, I thought I would mention a few words.  From what I can tell, most transit agencies in Ohio had some sort of promotion for this event.  SPARC (Sandusky Perkins Area Ride Connection) offered free rides for the day on their two routes.

Looking literally at the name of the day, this event promotes the use of  public transit over the automobile.  I would estimate most commuters would see this option as financial, and possibly/hopefully environmental.  COTA promotion involved helping commuters calculate there financial savings.  Basically, it comes down to the price of gas.  I always estimated that once gas prices are over $4.00 a gallon, the majority of commuters would be saving money by taking transit.  In the larger systems in Ohio the price of a one way ticket is about $2.00 to $2.25.  Therefore, a roundtrip would be about the price of one gallon of gas.  COTA mentioned a trend that their ridership goes up at $3.75.  Of course, this is stickly cost of gas, not taking into account for car maintenance, ownership, and insurance, which add much more to auto commuting.

The following tool will do a simple calculation for you.  If you do not pay for parking (which I assume most Ohioans do not–unless you work in transit friendly downtowns), most likely you will find that using transit (as it is now) will probably not save $1000s, but more like $100s a year.  The big money savings advertised involves eliminating the car (or a car for a multi-car household). Some money for thought.

Anyway, a happy belated Dump the Pump Day to you!

Brookings Rates Transit Systems for Work

17 05 2011

There were several articles about this recent Brookings Institution report about access to public transit.  The three main variables of the study were access to transit stops, wait-per-bus during rush hour, and if you can get to work within 90 minutes by transit.  Unsurprisingly, if you are not working downtown, you will have trouble breaking 90 minutes.  Here is an article from The Columbus Dispatch about COTA and here is one from about Greater Cleveland RTA.

For those interested in how Ohio metropolitan areas ranked (only 100 cities were included in this study):

Akron: 58

Cincinnati: 71

Cleveland: 41


Dayton: 27

Toledo: 40

Youngstown: 97

Go Dayton!  Do checkout the metro profiles (PDFs) which have great maps of each region.

COTA riders not using parking lots

3 05 2011

Here is an interesting article about increased ridership in Columbus (area).   While ridership has been up (the article cites a comparison from this year to the same week last year), it would not be hard to find a park-and-ride spot.  While this is just one case, I have been wondering if the park-and-ride model may be getting dated.  Percentage wise, the number of jobs in a central-business-district are not as great as they once were.  My advice, move to the city and ride the local bus to the office park.

from The Columbus Dispatch

No Streetcar or Light Rail for Columbus

12 02 2011

Though there is still a line for proposed streetcar funding, starting in 2015, there appears to be no plans to pursue this project.  The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) and Columbus say so, as they announce the distribution of federal funding (roads, buses, sidewalks).

Also, a proposed light-rail plan from Columbus to Polaris is completely off the radar.  This idea seemed to fade away after federal funding was not awarded in 2009.

from The Columbus Dispatch

State Funding Changed Lower

12 02 2011

Remember a few weeks ago when it seemed like all Ohio transit agencies were in good financial standing; pledging to not raise fares, cut routes, and even expand service. Some of this in now in question, now that the new administration has made cut-backs to proposals made by Strickland.  (His adminitstation proposed $150 million in funding to transit over three years).  This number was cut from $50 million a year to $40 million in 2011, and $20 million in 2012 and 2013.  I guess it is still better than nothing.

The following links tell the story.

Greater Dayton RTA

COTA – This article also mentions that Ohio will not compete in the future.  I mean, the state will not seek participate in new high-speed rail funding proposed this week.

Greater Cleveland RTA