Friday, May 8, 2009

Rochester NY Bus System (RGRTA) SUCKS!

Why I think our Rochester, NY bus system (RGRTA formerly RTS) SUCKS big time!-

Since I've had car problems I've had to take the bus. It has been a horrible experience! You really need a car to get around Rochester.

Exposed To The Elements. - I know that we have some bus shelters in Rochester, but have rarely seen any. You can be exposed to the rain, snow, wind etc, just waiting for the bus. If your fond of colds the bus is for you!

I Have To Walk In The Street. - Rochester doesn't have sidewalks in some areas. Also if it's winter the snow plows just pile up the snow on the sidewalks. Therefore, you have to walk in the street with ice, and snow, or wet with rain which can be slippery and dangerous. One time I fell on the ice and injured myself. Thank God a kind woman saw me, and gave me a ride home.

The Buses Don't Always Run Where, or When You Need Them - The buses only runs about once every hour, it can be hours apart on weekends. Some places they stop running before 11:00PM at night and resume at 6:00AM. If you work evenings and take the bus, then your out of luck. Many evening shift jobs end at 11:00PM. Therefore, if you can't get out early you will miss your ride.

Also if your destination is only a few miles away, you might not have bus service to it. It doesn't sound bad until you have to walk in the rain, or snow in the slippery street for three miles (one way) sometimes wearing snow boots. I've had blisters on my blisters. Now try carrying groceries all that way!

It's Expensive - They reduced the price to $1 per bus ride, but have more transfers, so it's more expensive in the long run. You can give them $3 to ride all day. But if you ride every day it's $21 for the week. I can do the same traveling spending $5-$7 a week on gas for my car. So riding the bus is much more costly.

I sometimes got the wrong information. - I carefully mapped out my destination on-line, then I called RGRTA who confirmed it. I wrote it all down carefully on paper. When I went to my bus stop I found out from another driver that bus #such&such no longer stopped there. The route is an old one that had been discontinued. The information is sometimes unreliable.

On another day I talked to a ditsy man. I told him where I was, but not my destination. He proceeded to tell me then a bus was coming. He didn't care where I was going, just wanted to inform me of the next bus to my apartment complex. Hello? Anyone home? I finally got him to understand that I had a destination in mind and got some directions. Of course I called back to get a confirmed by another non-ditsy person. Gosh!

It's extremely time consuming. I traveled about 4 miles one way and back the other day. It took the bus one hour to get there. We zigzagged all around, stopping at every mall in the aria, and sometimes waited several minutes for people to show up. The short trip took two hours to and from, and that was a simple one bus trip. It would have taken me about 15 minutes in my car.

It's sometimes crowded like sardines. - Not all the buses seemed crowded, but some buses are smaller then others. When some bus is full, I felt like a sardine in a can. The isles were narrow, and I was crunched in next to the heavy person seated next to me. We were shoulder to shoulder, and I had trouble moving.

It's difficult to see out the windows. - Some buses have advertisements one the windows so it's hard to see out the side windows. They are coated with ads. It makes it difficult to see your location and get off at the correct street.

If you live in Rochester it's best to invest in a car and skip the bus!


Anonymous said...

Yes, the bus system is annoying.

Went to the lilac festival today!

meleah rebeccah said...

this only furthers my Fear Of Public Transportation and why I refuse to take it!

S'onnie said...

Where I live we are quite lucky we have a very good public transport system. I live 10 minutes walk from either bus or train. However if our bus system was only $3 a day I would be extremely happy! We have a zone system and in zone 4 to get to zone 1 costs $4.50 each way or $7.50 on the flier. I use a monthly pass which costs $185 and I can ride on any bus but not the trains.

Mike Golch said...

our bus system Cleveland Transit System (CTS) became the regional transit system back in the late 70's eairly 80's. and they have sucked ever since.

dmarks said...

Often, the transit unions are to blame. They go on strike, and hold the entire public hostage to their greed. Then management caves, and they are forced to cut services and other things and the service overall gets worse.

A few years ago, the transit workers held New York City hostage to thier greed, and shut down the system. This is one reason I think that private transportation is more viable: if drivers decide to stay home, it doesn't get in anyone's way.

(I have no respect for those who try to soak the public and hold them hostage)

LadyBanana said...

That sounds like the buses were when I was a kid in a small town in the back of beyond, but now living in London it's different.

The buses here are very good, usually very frequent, but they can be very packed, often with rather smelly people.. ughh

It's also not particularly cheap - a single ride is £2.00 no matter if you go 1 stop or the entire route.

But we have the Oyster card which makes it a bit cheaper, but that's all pre-paid.

I'd prefer to go by car but I can't drive :(

I was out and about today and I can honestly say I didn't wait longer than 2 minutes for any one bus! (Not always like that though - today was a very good day)

74WIXYgrad said...

Well, I live 46 miles from my work, so I have to drive. If I go to some event in downtown Cleveland, I will park my car at a rapid transit station and take the rapid downtown. Way cheaper than parking.

twofinches said...

Hmmm you have been threatening to write this transit post for quite some time. Sounds like you are still frustrated. I am sorry you are struggling.

I have never like taking the bus. I know I know...they are eco-friendly (or so they say) JUst being honest

Awake In Rochester said...


Lilac fest?! Great! I plan on going on Thursday, if it doesn't rain to hard.
meleah rebeccah,

Oops! Sorry! It isn't bad everywhere, but ours suck.

Hm. It could be that our cost of living is different. Glad that besides the expense it is good.
Mike Golch,

They're not sure what to do with our transit system. They're going to modernize it one day, cut it back the next. Our local leaders don't agree.

Sorry to here that. I can't remember ours going on strike, but frankly I don't pay much attention because I never used them much till now.

London has a reputation of having one of the best transit systems. Oyster card! That sounds cool!

Rapid!? We only have slows.

Eco-friendly!? Good point! But I just wish they were more people friendly.

Speedcat Hollydale said...

I do not know nuthin bout birthin buses !!


smoootchie smoootchie

Awake In Rochester said...

Hey Speedykins!

Nice to see you.

J. Moses(Tri-State Media Watch Editor) said...

Had a thought about busses.

If you're ever in the Cincinnati/NKY's a little better...but not much. TANK, or Transit Authority of Northern KY busses, are $1.50 one way on local routes, or $1.75 for express. Transfers to other TANK busses are free.

On the other hand, Metro (or the Cincinnati system) has a staggered, zone system. It ranges from $1.75 up to around $3.00, with 4 other routes costing $3.50-4.25. Transfers are $0.25 (for now I believe), and to transfer between TANK and Metro is $0.75.

Complicated, huh? Maybe here, it's not much better after least here, most areas have sidewalks at bus stops.

In My Head Studios said...

I feel your pain. I had to ride the bus for years before I could afford a car. It was terrible!! We need more bike lanes in Rochester!!

Paula said...

Hey Awake,

I cannot begin to tell you how much I feel your pain. I live in the Upper Monroe neighborhood and work at Strong. The Logan's Lot fiasco has me staunchly refusing to park in a place that adds 40-60minutes to my commute (normally 10 min).

I have been exploring every option possible. I have been riding my bike to work, and it works out pretty well. Recently I decided to get my poor weather contigency plan in order. The bus was my plan, but I had such a rediculous experience that I really, really want to avoid the bus at all costs.

I could write a freaking dissertation on the incompetence of the RGRTA...and when I am finished with that, I am going to write a book about the stupidity of the University of Rochester Medical Center Parking Services...or lack thereof.

Glad to know that I am not alone with my commuting headaches! :) Good Luck!

Awake In Rochester said...

Welcome Paula,

It's always good to hear from someone local. I've been looking for more local people.

I've worked at Strong from my agency before. Are you a CNA like me, or nurse? What do you think of Strong. Do they treat you well? I'm looking for a job, however, I'm not crazy about drawing blood. Ekk!

Glad to hear your thoughts on buses in Rochester. I hope you can work things out. A bike is a good idea.

Anonymous said...

I have a disability and walk with a cane or walker. I would like to ride the bus - save gas $, parking, and better for the environment...but the bus stops downtown are several blocks apart. This makes the bus service inaccessible for people with disabilities who cannot walk to change buses. (But because I don't use a wheelchair, I don't qualify for LiftLine either.) I also agree with the advertisements blocking the bus can we tell where to get off? And bus drivers should announce major intersections. If you are unfamiliar with a route, how do you know what street you are on? Especially visitors to the city. I had hoped the Ren Square Bus Terminal would solve some of these problems, but apparently our elected officials are more concerned about their political agenda than the needs of the people. Rochester will never be able to grow without an effective bus system.

Anonymous said...

you all have very good points. but have any of you ever talked (and i mean really talked) to any of the drivers. try it sometime. they could give you quite an earful. you are not the only ones that are disgusted with rgrta.

Anonymous said...

you all have very good points. but have any of you ever talked (and i mean really talked) to any of the drivers. try it sometime. they could give you quite an earful. you are not the only ones that are disgusted with rgrta.