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COTA Updates in 2016

Home Forums General Columbus Discussion Transportation COTA Updates in 2016

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 40 total)
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  • #1109503

    ehill27
    Participant

    COTA to stick with delayed tracking plan
    By Rick Rouan THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH – January 3, 2016

    The Central Ohio Transit Authority is going against the recommendation of a consultant and staying the course with a company that is now five years late on its promise to deliver real-time bus tracking.

    READ MORE: http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/local/2016/01/03/cota-will-stick-to-long-delayed-plan-for-real-time-tracking-of-buses.html

    #1109506

    heresthecasey
    Participant

    CEO Curtis Stitt said the real-time system is close to being ready, and changing course would result in more delays. “We just don’t have a date,” he said. “I will say it’s a matter of several weeks, not several months.”

    I’ll believe this when I see it.

    #1109544

    Thom
    Participant

    Their fare system is not great. I look forward to a “smart card” of sorts that is linked to a credit or debit card for pay-as-you-go. There are only 2-3 places you can buy a 10 ride pass and they are both located within a few blocks of one another downtown. I am a sporadic rider, so a weekly or monthly pass would be a waste. And having exactly $2 paper isn’t always in the cards either. The combination of a antiquated fare system and lack of modern bus tracking makes riding COTA more hassle than it is worth (to their credit, when I do ride, the busses have shown up close to the printed schedule). If they want to increase ridership, they have to appeal to people who can afford not to ride the bus.

    #1109546

    ohbr
    Participant

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but COTA built a couple transfer stations in the last few years, how did they not add ticket machines to these new stations? To only have a couple ticket machines is ridiculous on top of all the other ways COTA lags behind technologically. Here we are again saying ‘it’s 20xx, time to enter the 21st century’. Sort of like SPARCC, Wonder, etc. copy and paste updates and complaints year to year with little to no movement but assurances that plans are in the works. Oh look, another consultant fee. I’d hate to turn down a tax levy but if they aren’t doing anything concrete to improve rider experience beyond making different routes and sprucing up bus stops, it’s hard to sell the idea we should keep throwing money at them only to be behind the times anyway.

    #1109549

    Thom
    Participant

    You can buy the weekly/monthly passes at many places around town including just about all the grocery stores. But the multi use passes are only available at the vending machines.

    http://www.cota.com/Fares-Passes/COTA-Pass-Outlets.aspx

    #1109676

    Robertsd937
    Participant

    Here’s a COTA update I want….a direct line from a west side park and ride to the airport. It would be AWESOME if I could take the bus to the airport. Currently I cannot to that.

    #1109921

    bjones7
    Participant

    Real-time is already out of date! I mean what major city hasn’t had real-time for 4-5 years. PLUS there are many apps now that work with COTA’s bus route data and are pretty close to real time. COTA NEEDS TO DROP real-time and use its money for something else. PLUS COTA had real-time back in 2010/2011 before “upgrading” their real-time tracking…5 years later..NOTHING!

    #1109934
    Josh Lapp
    Josh Lapp
    Participant

    Real-time is already out of date! I mean what major city hasn’t had real-time for 4-5 years. PLUS there are many apps now that work with COTA’s bus route data and are pretty close to real time. COTA NEEDS TO DROP real-time and use its money for something else. PLUS COTA had real-time back in 2010/2011 before “upgrading” their real-time tracking…5 years later..NOTHING!

    Word is (according to the Dispatch and others) that a real time release is impending in a matter of weeks.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but COTA built a couple transfer stations in the last few years, how did they not add ticket machines to these new stations? To only have a couple ticket machines is ridiculous on top of all the other ways COTA lags behind technologically. Here we are again saying ‘it’s 20xx, time to enter the 21st century’. Sort of like SPARCC, Wonder, etc. copy and paste updates and complaints year to year with little to no movement but assurances that plans are in the works. Oh look, another consultant fee. I’d hate to turn down a tax levy but if they aren’t doing anything concrete to improve rider experience beyond making different routes and sprucing up bus stops, it’s hard to sell the idea we should keep throwing money at them only to be behind the times anyway.

    Also, trip passes (5 & 10 trip) are available at the vending machines at High & Broad and in the transit centers on Spring Street and the Commons Garage.

    #1110032

    stein
    Participant

    I mean what major city hasn’t had real-time for 4-5 years.

    Philly.

    #1110062
    Ned23
    Ned23
    Participant

    Pay by phone. Wave the phone over the fare box and select what you want to buy, including multi-day passes and they pop out of the fare box.

    You can buy the weekly/monthly passes at many places around town including just about all the grocery stores. But the multi use passes are only available at the vending machines.

    Yes, sell the passes ON THE BUS with phone or CC. How complicated is that? Apparently, it’s really complicated.

    #1110099

    ohbr
    Participant

    Also, trip passes (5 & 10 trip) are available at the vending machines at High & Broad and in the transit centers on Spring Street and the Commons Garage.

    And that’s part of my point. If they can have them at 2 of the locations, why aren’t these machines at all the COTA facilities?

    #1110477

    jessicat0
    Participant

    I’ve been searching the site for the most recent information on COTA and the most populated thread started in 2014. New year, new info?

    There are bigger, more pressing changes happening in the COTA world it seems, but I’m looking for an answer to one (potentially rage filled) question:

    Has anyone heard anything about the much discussed GPS tracking system purchased a few years ago? Seems like a bunch of money was spent, then they said, “whoops, we failed”, and nothing new has happened since. I’m embarrassed for the city that this doesn’t exist as it’s a bare minimum component of most city transit systems. I mean… even TARTA has a form of it.

    I just waited from 5:10 pm to 5:42 pm for a bus that was scheduled to arrive at 5:18 and 5:37 pm. That means a bus was either a full 8 minutes early, or simply didn’t arrive, and that the second was 5 minutes late. I understand it’s rush hour, but… it’s rush hour each and every weekday, so the schedule of a professional, city-wide bus service should have that pretty much under wraps when developing a schedule. I’m more frustrated than usual because it’s 14 degrees outside, but thinking through my COTA rides, I don’t think I’ve ever entered a bus that was less than 5 minutes off schedule, and they’re often dramatically early or annoyingly late.

    Fortunately, I take the bus ‘occasionally'(/never because this always happens) and have alternatives: a 30 minute walk, bike, Car2Go, Uber, friends with cars. I also take it after work, when I don’t have to be anywhere on time to clock in, pick up my kids, etc. Unfortunately, that’s not the case for the vast majority of COTA bus riders and, frankly, COTA’s stance that a schedule is a suggestion is pathetic and unprofessional.

    So… GPS tracker? They can throw the schedule out the window if I can receive an alert when my bus is 10 minutes away.

    #1110478

    ohbr
    Participant

    See threads here: (they are separated by years)

    https://www.columbusunderground.com/forums/topic/cota-updates-in-2016

    https://www.columbusunderground.com/forums/topic/cota-updates-in-2015

    I’m sure Walker will merge this into 2016 for you.

    #1110486
    Walker Evans
    Walker Evans
    Keymaster

    I’m sure Walker will merge this into 2016 for you.

    Done!

    #1110499
    Josh Lapp
    Josh Lapp
    Participant

    Here is an opinion piece from the Dispatch that gives some insights into the real time progress:
    http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/editorials/2016/01/11/1-patience-grows-thin.html

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