Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Public Transit Seeks Comment on Commuter Bus Changes‏

The Phoenix Public Transit Department is seeking public comment on proposed changes to west Phoenix Express and RAPID™ commuter bus routes, that serve the I-17 corridor, as well as Grand Avenue Limited service. Express Routes 570, 581, 582 and 590 provide service in north and west Phoenix and in the City of Glendale. The Grand Avenue Limited travels through Peoria, Glendale and Phoenix. These routes could be reduced or eliminated.

Additionally, the RAPID™ I-17 service is proposed for extension to a new facility, the Happy Valley Park-and-Ride. Changes would be effective in January, 2011

To gather public comment, a public hearing and five public meetings are being held to present these proposed changes to City of Phoenix-operated Express and RAPID routes. The public can provide comment at the public meetings listed below.

Written comments will also be accepted. Address correspondence to “Express Bus Service Changes,” City of Phoenix Public Transit Department, 302 N. 1st Ave., Suite 900, Phoenix AZ 85003. Comments can also be e-mailed to pubtrans@phoenix.gov until 5:00 p.m., Wed., Oct. 20, 2010. Information on proposed bus service changes is posted at www.phoenix.gov/publictransit/jan2011.html

Public Meetings

Public Hearing:

Wednesday., Oct. 20, 2010, 5 p.m., City of Phoenix Public Transit Building, 4th Floor Conference Room, 302 N. 1st Ave, Phoenix, AZ.

Public Meetings:

Thurs. Oct. 14, 2010 5 p.m., 59th Ave and Myrtle, Glendale, AZ, bus stop for the Grand Avenue Limited and Express Route 570

Mon, Oct.18, 2010, 7:30 a.m., Phoenix Central Station, 300 N. Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ.

Tues., Oct. 19, 2010 6 a.m., 59th Ave and Thunderbird, Glendale, AZ, bus stop for the Express Route 581

Tues., Oct. 19, 2010, 6 p.m., Metrocenter Transit Center, 9451 N. Metro Parkway West (south of mall), Phoenix, AZ;

Wed, Oct. 20, 2010, 5 p.m., Bell Road/I-17 (Deer Valley) Park-and-Ride, 16808 North 28th Drive, Phoenix, AZ;

Written comments will also be accepted. Address correspondence to “Express Bus Service Changes,” City of Phoenix Public Transit Department, 302 N. 1st Ave., Suite 900, Phoenix AZ 85003. Comments can also be e-mailed to pubtrans@phoenix.gov until 5:00 p.m., Wed., Oct. 20, 2010. Information on proposed bus service changes is posted at www.phoenix.gov/publictransit/jan2011.html. For more information about the hearings, residents should call 602-262-7242. Information about bus and light rail service, as well as other transportation alternatives, is available at http://www.valleymetro.org/.

Source: Phoenix Public Transit

Thursday, October 7, 2010

METRO stresses driver safety with 'Stop on red' train wrap‏

METRO light rail unveiled a new train wrap today. It showcases a bold, yet simple, public safety message: Stop on red. Obeying traffic signals is key to safely sharing the road with the 20-mile, in-street METRO light rail system.

“We wanted to use our most visual asset – our light rail vehicle – to convey the importance of this message,” said CEO Steve Banta. “Safety remains a METRO priority and we continue to think of creative ways to keep the message top of mind for Valley drivers and passengers.”

The Stop on Red wrapped train is now in service. The wrap will remain through the fall and winter – a busy ridership and visitor season for both METRO and the Valley of the Sun.

“The Stop on Red train wrap is a great way to remind drivers to use caution around light rail when it matters most – when they're driving!” said METRO Board Chairman and Phoenix Councilman Tom Simplot. “METRO is using this innovative way to take the safety message right to the street.”

Also launched today is the Stop on Red online pledge. The pledge is intended to solidify drivers’ commitments to stopping on red and remaining an aware driver. As incentive, each person to sign will be entered into a drawing for 52 free all-day transit passes – a little encouragement to leave the car behind and try transit once a week, for a year.

To take the pledge or for more information on METRO’s safety campaign, visit

Photos of the wrap and its unveiling are available on METRO’s Facebook page. Photos can be emailed upon request.

Source: Metro Light Rail

Monday, October 4, 2010

METRO to unveil driver safety train wrap - Oct. 7‏


METRO to unveil driver safety train wrap. Great photo opportunity on Oct. 7.

METRO will use its most visual asset – a light rail vehicle – to display an important message: stop on red.

Light rail safety remains a priority for METRO. While the number of collisions between light rail vehicles and automobiles has decreased by more than half in 2010, METRO and its member cities want to see this record continue to improve.

The intent of this train wrap is to serve as a powerful reminder to drive aware and stop on red lights. Red light (or arrow) running has been the primary cause for light rail-involved collisions.

Also on Thursday, METRO will initiate an online pledge seeking drivers’ commitments to stopping on red. Each person to sign up will be entered into a drawing for free transit passes, to encourage transit use at least one day a week. Greater information will be available at
www.metrolightrail.org/safety by Thursday.


Thursday, Oct. 7

9 a.m.


METRO Operations and Maintenance Center

605 S. 48th St., Phoenix (where 48th St. dead ends, south of Washington St.)


METRO CEO Steve Banta

Mesa Vice Mayor and METRO Board Vice Chairman Kyle Jones

Tempe Councilmember and METRO Board member Shana Ellis

Police representation from each city with light rail: Phoenix, Tempe and Mesa


Parking is available in the covered lot at the facility’s entrance, on the west side of the main building. Media trucks can park in the unpaved lot on the east side of the main building.

Source: Metro Light Rail

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Bus riders warned about possible strike‏

Transit riders who use or transfer to the 33 bus routes operated by the City of Phoenix’s contractor Veolia Transportation Services should have back up plans for alternative travel to work, school, and other destinations beginning Monday morning, October 4, 2010.

No agreements have resulted from the negotiations between Veolia and its labor unions and the most recent extension ends midnight Sunday, October 3, 2010 for two of the three unions. A number of actions could be taken including a call for a strike.

If the strike is affirmative, Veolia is contractually obligated to provide 60 percent of current service; however, there may be a gap of time in which no service is provided. As soon as possible, contingency plans based 30 percent, 45 percent, and 60 percent of current service will be put into effect depending on the resources available.

Under the 60 percent plan, Veolia-operated routes will run on other schedules: local bus routes will use the Sunday bus schedule and RAPID I-17, I-10-East and SR-51 will have fewer trips. Express Routes 581, 582, and 590; the DASH Phoenix downtown business circulator; and the SMART neighborhood circulator in Sunnyslope will be suspended. A list of those affected routes can be found at ValleyMetro.org or by going directly to

Veolia operates bus service via a contract with the Phoenix Public Transit Department which also provides some service into the cities of Glendale, Peoria, Scottsdale, and Sun City.

The following are some alternative transportation suggestions to bus passengers who may be affected if labor agreements are not resolved:

Use the Trip Planner on ValleyMetro.org for bus and METRO schedules
Go to ValleyMetro.org to check the schedules of non-affected bus routes and for the METRO schedule - passengers may be able to use an alternative route. Also check a map of unaffected bus routes available via

Carpools or vanpools

Valley Metro offers a ride matching system that allows commuters to quickly and securely find a carpool partner based on proximity, destination and travel route by going to ValleyMetro.org.

If you want to meet your carpool partners at a neutral site, check out the list of Phoenix owned and operated sites at www.phoenix.gov/publictransit/bldgs.html

Taxis, limos, and shuttles

Sky Harbor, operated by the Phoenix Aviation Department, has a list of transportation companies on their website at http://www.skyharbor.com/transportation-and-parking/limos-and-taxis.html

Tips for Employers:

Help your bus-riding employees in advance by providing them with alternatives for getting to work. Following is a list of tips to help get employees to work should the labor negotiations affect bus service.

1. Once you’ve identified your regular bus riders, provide them with a list of other employees that live in or in close proximity to their zip code. Encourage them to contact fellow co-workers about carpooling if their bus service is affected.

2. If you have an internal carpool matching system, identify your regular bus riders and have them “matched” for carpools with co-workers.

3. Suggest that co-workers who set-up “contingency carpools” make arrangements in advance by discussing pick-up times and locations, and have them exchange phone numbers.

4. Consider working with companies that are in close proximity to help place your regular bus riders in existing carpools or with drive-alone commuters.

5. Promote the Web site,
sharetheride.valleymetro.org, to regular bus riders and other commuters and encourage them to receive a match list of potential carpool partners.

6. Arrange for employees to telework if they have the types of jobs allowing them to work remotely.

For strike information and general transit information, go to ValleyMetro.org or call a Valley Metro customer service representative at 602-253-5000; TTY 602-261-8208 for persons with text telephones.

Source: Valley Metro