Wednesday, January 15, 2020

IS KANSAS CITY OFFERING BUS FREEBIE TO BOOST DECLINING PUBLIC TRANSIT?!?

Suggested by one of our KICK-ASS TKC READERS . . . Here's a glimpse clever municipal tactic now that ride-share and telecommuting offer customers more affordable alternatives . . . Read more:

Cities Offer Free Buses in Bid to Boost Flagging Ridership

LAWRENCE, Mass.-The driver on a bus circling downtown here merely tapped a button to count riders on a recent weekday morning as people streamed by the farebox without paying. The riders weren't doing anything wrong: the region's transit authority in September stopped collecting money on three routes in this old industrial city north of Boston.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

OF COURSE!

The local shell game is always in effect.

Anonymous said...

And Lucas is in Jeff City trying to get the state to help pay for it.
As in, every taxpayer in Missouri picking up the tab for KCMO's idea of a "free" service.
Just guessing maybe that if the state electeds weren't in on the takeoff, they're not going to be real interested in being handed the bill.
Will there be selfies?

Anonymous said...

Every bus I see North of River is dang near empty.

Anonymous said...

Pay Uber to give rides to certified riders in need. Be cheaper and go right into the ligit economy not city muckedy muckes to be spent on luxury items.

Anonymous said...

^^^^ they already have that, they come to their house either in small busses or vans, I can’t remember the name of the service but I see them all the time.

Anonymous said...

As I understand it, the "free ride" will be limited to those routes that originate and end within Kansas City, Missouri.

If I could, let me make a suggestion to those unfortunate people who have to work or (shudder) live Downtown.

Drive to North Kansas City, park for free, and then take a Bus for the 5-10 minute ride Downtown. Every route through NKC originates in KCMO and terminates in KCMO, so there can be no fare.

After work, have a drink or meal at one of the great places that are already open or are constantly opening up in NKC, then head home using one of the easy connections to I-35/I-29/I-49, I-435/I-70, or I-35/I-635.

If you have the misfortune to Live Downtown, avoid the cost and get away from the hassle, homeless, risks and general nastiness by taking a free ride to NKC for an evening's fun.

Anonymous said...

Your first mistake was to live downtown; your second mistake was to live in KCMO; I suggest you remedy both and save yourself thousands of dollars per year, and have a voice in some legitimate government process

Anonymous said...

Only people who never ride buses would believe this to be true in KC. The buses here are crowded. Too crowded. We must expend our fleet and our and routes.

Anonymous said...

The Bus service going east and west along 39th street are typically less than 10% full. Many times the bus will be completely empty. I wonder if anyone has ever done an audit to see if there was any waste in the KCATA???

Anonymous said...

The whole KCATA is a huge waste. Millions spent for less than 1% of the total population of KC. But KC has a huge history of wasting large sums of money that have zero impact on living conditions in this town.

Anonymous said...

That's a lie I ride the 39th at bus to state line all the time it connects with 7 other major routes ride that bus between 6@8am and 4@7pm it will not be empty even between those times including Sat@Sun there is someone on that bus.

Anonymous said...

^^^^^True. And the north-south lines are standing room only between 39th & downtown. 10:55 has probably never been on a bus.

Anonymous said...

^^^Okay so at one point in the day maybe 50 people are on the busses. Oh wow that's money well spent. But then nobody wants to put out the true figures to back up anything.

Tracy Thomas said...

Notice that the move to make the busses free did not start until the toy train 2 1/2 mile trolley for rich white tourists came to town. It would of course fail if there was a fare. Nobody carries cash. Would take too long to process credit cards. And nobody would buy (or carry around) a bunch of tokens. This ain't the NYC subway! Might just ride the trolley one way, one time in their life.

Consider: Denver's downtown portion of THEIR fabulous light rail system is FREE in Lodo, it just costs to travel outside of downtown to the suburbs, eg the Nine Mile, or I've even taken the Denver metro to the airport. Fast and cheap and nice. We will never have that. Besides, nobody here goes anywhere but grandma's, then we drive.

KC is spread too thin financially on all levels. And straddling a state line. Run by a chamber whose board and staff live in Joco. Fluffing up a delusional council of former members of their student councils 25 years ago. Pretending we are a major city rather than borderline second--now third--tier. (Don't tell Amazon. They're still playing with Sly James' 1000 free gifts.)

So then we have the black/white issue. The only way the city can justify free north/south frou frou trolley is to make busses free for working or poor folk riding east/west.

Anonymous said...

Every time a state operation ceases to be broadly useful and its existence comes under scrutiny, state operators view the potential program termination as a "loss" on the books, as if they're running a business, rather than a gain for the people they maintain control over aka constituents. The state operators must find a way to keep the program alive, usually through progressive taxation (hurts those between the direct beneficiaries of the program to those that can shield themselves from taxes the worst) or "borrowing" from other programs (which inevitably creates irreconcilable debt).

All this leads to the phenomenon known as the pedantic twitter thread, which causes everyone except the writer of the pedantic twitter thread great emotional pain.

Anonymous said...

^^^^^Do you have a point? Inquiring minds want to know.

Anonymous said...

^^You for sure don't so STFU

Anonymous said...

^^^Blow me while I shit. How's that for a point?

Anonymous said...

Why ride the bus when the gubmint gives these losers enough money to buy Escalades

Anonymous said...

1:51 Don't start a state program without recognizing that it will exist in perpetuity; the state fucks the people who have more than nothing and less than something the most; twitter threads are self-important, pseudo-intellectual garbage that leads the reader to obvious conclusions like "You must drink water to survive" while the writer treats himself like he's just split the atom

Charlie Horse said...

Just wait until the hobos pitch tents in the back of the buses and ride around all day long and night.

Anonymous said...

Here it's mostly political theater at this point.

Anonymous said...

About as effective as removing red light cameras to be nice to drivers. They did that and drivers went ten times as nuts as they were when they were complaining they had to stop because of those damn cameras which were interfering with their rights.

Anonymous said...

When there is no sense of urgency to get people to/fro, they build a lack of confidence in the service and reliability - that folks have just found alternatives to the bus service. It’s like fast food - you have to offer free stuff or nobody would want it.

Anonymous said...

NO issues with learning from successes or failures of other cities; but at some point enough of the comparisons of the successes or failures to build one claim or another. What works in one city wont necessarily work in Kansas City; vice versa. Kansas City either needs to find an identity and work with the identify or cease to exist as a viable metro area. I do question the leadership of Kansas City, Missouri in the metro area, though. The city is run like a city of 10,000 not a city of 500,000.

Anonymous said...

Yes the overwhelming majority of the funding is not fare based funding. The funding is based on the number of riders and the advocates assume free buses will result in increased ridership. Unfortunately, past experience elsewhere indicated free buses resulted in decreased ridership over time due to the riders. Those that could afford other means of transportation went elsewhere due to the decreased quality of service. I have no interest in riding a bus next to a drunk homeless person. The stench alone is enough to force me to go elsewhere. Transportation is not a substitute for a social services program.