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  1. #1
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    Why more people don't take the bus

    I have orientation for a new job on Tuesday. I have to arrive by 8am. Google Maps says that if I drive it will take me approximately half an hour using an interstate highway and a state route. As I'm traveling by myself, I would prefer to take the bus. According to Google Maps, this option will entail me leaving the house at 6:02am, transferring once, walking nearly a mile, and arriving nearly 45 minutes early. This would give me time to drink a cup of coffee and knit several rounds on my current sock and I would feel better about myself as a person and a citizen of the earth, not to mention happier with the folks around me, but you can see why more people don't make this choice, can't you? (Riding a bike is predicted to take 1 hour 19 minutes- probably much longer at the rate I ride lol- and at this time of year that would mean doing so in drizzle or pouring rain most days.)
    Quote Originally Posted by halfspeed View Post
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    Much of this is a chicken-and-egg problem - people don't take the bus because there aren't enough bus routes and the buses don't run frequently enough; and the number of routes and frequency are limited because not enough people take the bus to justify better service. Unfortunately the method I've seen that's most effective in curing this problem is a negative one. Make driving so much less convenient and/or more expensive than it is now and it will get substantial numbers of people to use alternate transport. Not a popular political stance to propose.

  3. #3
    Living 'n Dying in -Time JBHoren's Avatar
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    ^^^^ As it is in the San Francisco Bay Area, so, too, in South Florida: few routes, and they run infrequently (and they're frequently already-full, by the time they get to my bus stop). Plus, some neighborhood connecting routes (55+ retirement areas) don't run on the weekend.

  4. #4
    Wookie Fred chewybrian's Avatar
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    If the bus ran door to door, every ten minutes, a lot of people would still not use it. There is a stigma to being on the bus, and it puts you in close contact with a 'different' slice of humanity. I don't know how you could ever solve these problems.

    The most frustrating issue to me on my local line is that being allowed to bring your bike along is 50/50. If the rack is full (often is), then the driver has discretion to allow you to carry the bike into the bus (which is not hard). So, you might wait for the bus only to be shot down.

    Another big hassle is transfers, which are sometimes required for us even though we stay on one route. If the first bus is more than five minutes late, the second leaves without you. This may mean a wait of an hour most days, or THREE HOURS on a Saturday for the next bus! The drivers will not even tell you this is happening--enjoy your unscheduled, unannounced stay at city hall, folks.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by chewybrian View Post
    If the bus ran door to door, every ten minutes, a lot of people would still not use it. There is a stigma to being on the bus, and it puts you in close contact with a 'different' slice of humanity. I don't know how you could ever solve these problems.

    The most frustrating issue to me on my local line is that being allowed to bring your bike along is 50/50. If the rack is full (often is), then the driver has discretion to allow you to carry the bike into the bus (which is not hard). So, you might wait for the bus only to be shot down.

    Another big hassle is transfers, which are sometimes required for us even though we stay on one route. If the first bus is more than five minutes late, the second leaves without you. This may mean a wait of an hour most days, or THREE HOURS on a Saturday for the next bus! The drivers will not even tell you this is happening--enjoy your unscheduled, unannounced stay at city hall, folks.
    A slightly different take on what you refer to with late connections. I catch a ferry to and from work. A bus service is supposed to co-ordinate with the ferry service. It would get really frustrating to see the bus from the ferry 100 yards from the dock, and for the bus then to negotiate the roundabout, and head off to the city before the ferry has even docked.

    The ferry is owned by the state government but operated by a private company that simply doesn't have a clue nor care about customer service and running to published timetables when they are supposed to link with other services. I don't think I have ever seen in the past four months anyone get on the bus at the ferry terminus.
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  6. #6
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    I lived in Boston for a while and only used the bus a couple of times, once when the T was out of service before my stop and they were herding people onto buses. And another time when a friend who used buses all the time dragged me along.

    Not that I mind them anymore than I mind the subway, which I used frequently. Just that it always seemed like the T would get me close enough to anywhere I needed to go before walking that last mile or two, or riding a bike could get me around town quicker than public transport ever could.

    Plus, it was another schedule, another bus #/routes system to reckon with, change/cash hassle (I think they've since gone to a card system?)...

    Maybe if I'd stayed in the city longer, or taken a job with subsidized monthly passes which included the bus system, or moved somewhere away from a subway stop but near a bus route, I'd have used buses. But none of those situations developed, and as it was, waiting for buses and dealing with surface traffic was usually longer than most other available options.
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    More people don't use the bus because of two reasons:

    1) It is a different set of skills than driving or biking. Most people never learned a bus riding skill set and therefore it is unfamiliar and must be bad since they don't immediately know what to do. Yet they block how much they had to learn to be able to drive a car or ride a bike and all the difficulties that came with learning that skill set.

    2) Buses can be somewhat inconvenient. They are often not a widely valued resource and therefore are neglected in city, state, and federal budgets.

  8. #8
    Senior Member dynodonn's Avatar
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    Ten years ago, the buses that stopped near my workplace were virtually empty, then our local university eliminated a considerable percentage of it's parking in order to construct more classrooms and dormitories.....today, the buses are practically standing room only.... make driving/parking less convenient, and mass transit usually benefits.

  9. #9
    Senior Member overbyte's Avatar
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    A couple of months ago, I was planning a trip to a nearby city which is about 2 to 2.5 hours driving-time away from my home. I compared other ways to get there using Google Maps and actual bus company trip planning websites. By a combination of municipal buses and rapid-transit commuter trains, it would take 1 or 3 transfers (or new tickets because they are not on the same system so transfers don't work) and a total of 4 to 5 hours of time. Then I looked at Greyhound Bus Lines, which has a terminal in my city near my home. It would have taken 3 days, with transfers to other bus companies and such poor timing and infrequent runs that I'd have to layover overnight twice! I'm not in some outpost, but in Santa Cruz, California, just over the hills from Silicon Valley (San Francisco Bay area). Fortunately, Amtrak goes there too. That route involved a 1 hour bus ride first and then the train, for total travel time about the same as driving. The few times I've traveled on Amtrak were nice; easier than driving once you're on the train. The purpose of the trip was to get to the starting point of a 4.5 hr group bike ride to a state park for camping over a weekend, so I didn't want to leave my car parked in some questionable neighborhood all that time. I decided to go by Amtrak. (Unfortunately, I became ill and had to cancel the whole trip, so I never had a chance to try that route.) Travel by Amtrak with a bike and camping equipment isn't as simple as it should be, due to limits on the number and size of baggage and lack of bike facilities on some trains, but that's another story for a different thread.

  10. #10
    Senior Member overbyte's Avatar
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    Would an ultracompact take-anywhere bike help increase public transit ridership?

    I've taken my 20"-wheeled folding bike on a bus and an Amtrak train before. But even as small as a 20" bike folds, it's still inconvenient onboard. The bus has bike racks in front for 2 or 3 bikes, but they were full, so I folded my bike and put it in the luggage rack inside the bus, of which there was only one above the front wheel well, waist high. On the return, the rack was full of other stuff, so I had to negotiate down the aisle of the bus, with a folding bike and large duffle bag, to the rear where there was more leg room for the bike.

    Even if I had a smaller bike, with 16" wheels, which folds up smaller than my 20", I'd still have had some trouble. A Brompton would definitely have been easier. A Dahon Jifo might have been good, too. But the best one I've found so far for taking on public transit is a bike not yet available in the US, made in China for mostly domestic sales. It folds down to 10"x12"x16", which is smaller than the Jifo and only 1/3 the volume of a folded Brompton. It has little trolley wheels like the Brompton so it can be rolled like luggage using the handlebar extended to pull it along. It folds up in a manner which puts the chain inside, as a Brompton does. When it's unfolded, it's a decent size for an adult to ride comfortably at a reasonable speed (only a single gear). It has a rear suspension shock absorber spring with adjustable stiffness. Onboard the bus or train, it could fit easily on one's lap and whatever else is being carried could go under the seat. A Brompton is small, but not lap-small. At the destination, the bike could be brought wherever you go since it's so small and when covered with a nylon skirt it resembles rolling luggage. You wouldn't need to lock it up, just take it with you into the office or store or restaurant and stash it under your chair or desk or next to you. While waiting at a station or bus stop, the folding bike can be used as a stool or chair because it is stable when rested and the bike seat is on top where you can sit on it and the steering stem is behind your back to lean against.

    Is this a bike that you think people would buy to assist their bus or train trip for that first and last mile to and from the public system?

    How much would it be worth? The same as a 1-speed Brompton? or as a Dahon Jifo? more? less? how much? Would you buy one?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by chewybrian View Post
    If the bus ran door to door, every ten minutes, a lot of people would still not use it. There is a stigma to being on the bus, and it puts you in close contact with a 'different' slice of humanity. I don't know how you could ever solve these problems.
    I volunteer three days a week fixing up and repairing bikes to give to people in the local homeless shelters or those on the street. Chances are any members of that slice of humanity I meet on the bus will be people I already know and we'll have a good talk.
    Quote Originally Posted by halfspeed View Post
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  12. #12
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    here, the bus is business tax funded to get people to shopping and work on day shift
    but still $3 a ride ..
    its done before the movies get out , so then you walk or call a cab.
    Bus 2X a Day, to Pacific County WA is 1.50.

    Corvallis , home of Oregon State U, the bus is free. general fund pays thru the tax base.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 03-17-14 at 11:50 AM.

  13. #13
    Wookie Fred chewybrian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramona_W View Post
    I volunteer three days a week fixing up and repairing bikes to give to people in the local homeless shelters or those on the street. Chances are any members of that slice of humanity I meet on the bus will be people I already know and we'll have a good talk.
    Thank you for giving your time to what seems a very worthwhile cause.

    I meet a lot of fun people on the bus. I also overhear a lot of talk about parole officers, court dates, drugs, and fights. Most of the younger people don't have an 'inside voice' for use on their phones. The older folks are usually much more friendly, and laid back, and willing to talk to pass the time. (not the kind of talk you mean, for me)

    In my prior comment, I was just noting that it is a severe culture shock to a lot of people who don't deal with that element every day. That is one of the reasons many people aren't riding, in response to your original question. My Mom wouldn't ride that bus if you paid her to go. For most of us on this forum, it does not seem to be a major deterrent. I'm more concerned with getting where I want to be at the alleged scheduled time, or being able to bring my bike along.
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  14. #14
    Senior Member timmythology's Avatar
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    I have ridden the bus for a long time, and in general don't mind it. Lately I have found that the bus in Portland is very convenient. I have a coworker that I relieve on Fri/Sat nights at 11:30 Pm, the gentleman has reported that he feels vulnerable while waiting for a bus at that time of night, and especially when the bus does not come until 11:50 Pm. He has explained that he has had stuff thrown at him, been yelled at, and even threatened once. We work in an industrial area, so the stop is very isolated.

    Less than idle signage, making it more confusing to learn than it has to be. I like the trains better, and they fit more, especially when combining it with a bike.

  15. #15
    Senior Member enigmaT120's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chewybrian View Post
    The most frustrating issue to me on my local line is that being allowed to bring your bike along is 50/50. If the rack is full (often is), then the driver has discretion to allow you to carry the bike into the bus (which is not hard). So, you might wait for the bus only to be shot down.
    The buses I ride aren't supposed to have bikes inside, so if the bike rack is full you're stranded. In Salem that shouldn't be a problem, as a person should be able to ride all the way across the city. But I also ride the rural buses, and if I got bumped off the bus here in Stayton I would have a 43 mile ride home (if the ferry was running and I could make it there by 7:00), so I've started leaving my bike in the county yard where the buses park for the night. It seems pretty secure and is full of cop cars.

    When I work in Salem I don't take my bike either, unless I'm willing to ride all the way home from work there about 31 miles. I've done it several times but only after I got bumped once and had to do it or wait 1.5 hours for the next bus.

    I've thought about a folding bike, as I think they would let me bring it aboard. They're no bigger than people's shopping carts. But I really love riding my Fargo, so I think I'll stay with the system I have.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by overbyte View Post
    I've taken my 20"-wheeled folding bike on a bus and an Amtrak train before. But even as small as a 20" bike folds, it's still inconvenient onboard. The bus has bike racks in front for 2 or 3 bikes, but they were full, so I folded my bike and put it in the luggage rack inside the bus, of which there was only one above the front wheel well, waist high. On the return, the rack was full of other stuff, so I had to negotiate down the aisle of the bus, with a folding bike and large duffle bag, to the rear where there was more leg room for the bike.

    Even if I had a smaller bike, with 16" wheels, which folds up smaller than my 20", I'd still have had some trouble. A Brompton would definitely have been easier. A Dahon Jifo might have been good, too. But the best one I've found so far for taking on public transit is a bike not yet available in the US, made in China for mostly domestic sales. It folds down to 10"x12"x16", which is smaller than the Jifo and only 1/3 the volume of a folded Brompton. It has little trolley wheels like the Brompton so it can be rolled like luggage using the handlebar extended to pull it along. It folds up in a manner which puts the chain inside, as a Brompton does. When it's unfolded, it's a decent size for an adult to ride comfortably at a reasonable speed (only a single gear). It has a rear suspension shock absorber spring with adjustable stiffness. Onboard the bus or train, it could fit easily on one's lap and whatever else is being carried could go under the seat. A Brompton is small, but not lap-small. At the destination, the bike could be brought wherever you go since it's so small and when covered with a nylon skirt it resembles rolling luggage. You wouldn't need to lock it up, just take it with you into the office or store or restaurant and stash it under your chair or desk or next to you. While waiting at a station or bus stop, the folding bike can be used as a stool or chair because it is stable when rested and the bike seat is on top where you can sit on it and the steering stem is behind your back to lean against.

    Is this a bike that you think people would buy to assist their bus or train trip for that first and last mile to and from the public system?

    How much would it be worth? The same as a 1-speed Brompton? or as a Dahon Jifo? more? less? how much? Would you buy one?
    The problem with selling a folding bike one could bring in the cabin of a bus is there are so few people who do this. I travel on buses five or six days a week and I've counted only once or twice a folding bike has been taken inside the bus! There truly is no real demand for a super folding bike for bus commuters. Furthermore, most people who ride buses are not bike commuters or would never even think of incorporating a bicycle into their travel. To be honest, most bus commuters would prefer to wait an hour for a transfer bus than walk or bike commute to their final destination even if it were faster.

    Here are some of the problems I see right away.

    1. You Don't want to put ANY folding bike on your lap -- A folding bike will weight about 25 lbs or more and it will be painful and dirty putting that hunk of steel on your lap.

    2. Stick folders already exist ---- You have the Strida and Carry Me which believe it or not, maybe better bringing inside the cabin since they are thin and can fit overhead racks or between your legs. Since they are thin, a stick folder won't black the isle.

    3. Xootr kick scooter ---- This kick scooter is really the best choice of all since it's light and can fit between your legs. You are almost as fast as a folding bike and if the final distination is less than 3 miles away, the difference between you and a bicycle is minimal.

    However, even though I usually bring my Xootr onboard buses all the time, I've never seen anyone do the same.
    Last edited by Dahon.Steve; 03-18-14 at 04:51 AM.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramona_W View Post
    I have orientation for a new job on Tuesday. I have to arrive by 8am. Google Maps says that if I drive it will take me approximately half an hour using an interstate highway and a state route. As I'm traveling by myself, I would prefer to take the bus. According to Google Maps, this option will entail me leaving the house at 6:02am, transferring once, walking nearly a mile, and arriving nearly 45 minutes early. This would give me time to drink a cup of coffee and knit several rounds on my current sock and I would feel better about myself as a person and a citizen of the earth, not to mention happier with the folks around me, but you can see why more people don't make this choice, can't you? (Riding a bike is predicted to take 1 hour 19 minutes- probably much longer at the rate I ride lol- and at this time of year that would mean doing so in drizzle or pouring rain most days.)
    I use the bus 5 or 6 times a week and always use the bus schedule when determining the next arrival. This is what make bus use so frustrating is waiting 30 minutes or more for one to arrive. I'll never understand why most people do not make use of schedules.

    Quite frankly, I would move to a city that had a lightrail stop within 1 mile of my house/apartment. If there wasn't lightrail in my city, I would look at the transit website and study which bus line provided the most service during week days and weekends. Then I would move within a mile of that bus line!
    Last edited by Dahon.Steve; 03-18-14 at 06:59 PM.

  18. #18
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
    I lived in Boston for a while and only used the bus a couple of times, once when the T was out of service before my stop and they were herding people onto buses. And another time when a friend who used buses all the time dragged me along.

    Not that I mind them anymore than I mind the subway, which I used frequently. Just that it always seemed like the T would get me close enough to anywhere I needed to go before walking that last mile or two, or riding a bike could get me around town quicker than public transport ever could.

    Plus, it was another schedule, another bus #/routes system to reckon with, change/cash hassle (I think they've since gone to a card system?)...

    Maybe if I'd stayed in the city longer, or taken a job with subsidized monthly passes which included the bus system, or moved somewhere away from a subway stop but near a bus route, I'd have used buses. But none of those situations developed, and as it was, waiting for buses and dealing with surface traffic was usually longer than most other available options.
    The system has improved a fair bit in the past few years. I don't live in Boston, but my son does and I visit 2-3 times a year. I typically buy a weekly transit pass ($18) which gives me unlimited use of the T and the local bus service, as well as some commuter rail and inner harbor ferries. We usually plan our trips around the T, but the busses sometimes make the last couple of miles a bit more doable. FWIW I can cover a mile in 15 minutes or a tad less at my normal walking pace, my son's pace is similar. We have been walking in iffy weather and the bus comes along, we hop on for the last bit of distance we need to cover. The cost for a monthly pass is $70, but many people have theirs subsidized through work because the average cost of parking in the city is something insane like $350 a month.

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  19. #19
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Where we live right now, the bus service is really good for getting me downtown. I'm there in about 10-15 minutes (unless the traffic is really heavy), the bus is usually mostly full ... and I'd guess there's a 60/40 split between career people and uni students.

    However, we're seriously considering moving, and one of the issues is the bus service in the area where we're thinking of going. The further out, the worse it gets. And a few of the places we might otherwise consider moving don't have a bus service that would get me to work on time ... and I work flex time!

  20. #20
    Senior Member surreal's Avatar
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    I think this is a chicken vs the egg situation. Is the bus under-used b/c it's so disappointing, or is the bus disappointing b/c it's under-used? I think it's the former, at least in my area, b/c there seems to be plenty of ppl who could and would spend money to use the bus service, if they could depend on it to get them places reliably. This holds true here in South Jersey, and right across the bridge in Phila, PA, where the bus is notoriously horrible. But, if the transit companies claim that they can't improve the service until fare revenue goes up and usership increases, I cannot accuse them of lying.

    For those of you who enjoy early 90s hip-hop, I submit the following song, which is ostensibly about Del's bus trip from Oakland Ca to San Francisco, but is more just a generalized rant about the tribulations one comes acorss while riding (or trying to ride) the bus. I rate the song pg-13, for some profanity.


  21. #21
    Senior Member overbyte's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve View Post
    The problem with selling a folding bike one could bring in the cabin of a bus is there are so few people who do this. I travel on buses five or six days a week and I've counted only once or twice a folding bike has been taken inside the bus! There truly is no real demand for a super folding bike for bus commuters. Furthermore, most people who ride buses are not bike commuters or would never even think of incorporating a bicycle into their travel. To be honest, most bus commuters would prefer to wait an hour for a transfer bus than walk or bike commute to their final destination even if it were faster.

    Here are some of the problems I see right away.

    1. You Don't want to put ANY folding bike on your lap -- A folding bike will weight about 25 lbs or more and it will be painful and dirty putting that hunk of steel on your lap.

    2. Stick folders already exist ---- You have the Strida and Carry Me which believe it or not, maybe better bringing inside the cabin since they are thin and can fit overhead racks or between your legs. Since they are thin, a stick folder won't black the isle.

    3. Xootr kick scooter ---- This kick scooter is really the best choice of all since it's light and can fit between your legs. You are almost as fast as a folding bike and if the final distination is less than 3 miles away, the difference between you and a bicycle is minimal.

    However, even though I usually bring my Xootr onboard buses all the time, I've never seen anyone do the same.
    I agree that very few people ride bikes to the bus and even fewer take a folding bike onboard. Perhaps that would somewhat increase if they had a good solution to the onboard bike. 99% of people are lazy and would rather sit and wait than pedal a bike. But if they are a transit rider, they still need to get to the bus and from the bus to their destination, so it's either walking or riding something as the coupling between transit and the end points. Some cities are trying rent-a-bike solutions, where you choose a bike from the lockup rack, swipe your credit car or transit pass card through the pay machine on a kiosk, which then unlocks that bike, and you ride to your destination, where you return the bike to a similar rack, terminating your rental. New York City is trying that using a grant from some deep pockets benefactor. The whole issue of bikes and transit is a work in progress.

    However, you're right that there are already slim folding stick bikes. They are bulkier when folded but may fit between the legs in front of a bus/train rider. I noticed that in Sweden where the MicroBike Microbike was designed, built, and sold, the company closed down after selling 16,000 of them from 1988 to 1993. The older ones apparently have breakage problems, but I don't know if that was the reason for closing down the business. It had a 3-second fold time and fit between the legs on a bus and resembled the Strida, with 12.5" wheels, but different geometry. I've never tried a bike with 8" wheels like the Carry Me or A-Bike, but seeing some videos I don't think I'd like the toy-like feel of it.

    The Dahon Jifo, which was perhaps Dahon's attempted rival to Brompton's compact fold, also is no longer in production according to NYCEwheels: Dahon Jifo 16 folding bike. I don't know why (poor demand, engineering problems, contract problems after the family rift in the Dahon family which ended up creating the rival Tern, or whatever). NYCE was advertising it as: "The light weight, single speed Dahon Jifo 16 is made to be ultra-mobile, able to be folded down quickly and carried aboard buses and trains with ease. This folding bike compliments your mass-transit commute, perfect for that last bit of travel from the transit station to your final destination."

    Regarding the weight of a bike on the lap, I tried a mock bike consisting of a box filled to weigh 28 lbs. It wasn't too bad on the lap for a while. I don't know how it would be on a bouncy bus ride. With a rigid-bottom bag for it, the bike weight would be spread across the thighs. Maybe it would be acceptable for a typical duration of bus/train ride. I've ordered one of these super-compact bikes to play with, so I'll eventually find out. But I agree, on the floor between the legs is better, such as the Strida and Microbike were designed for.

    In spite of all these truths, there may still be a niche for a super-compact folding bike since it takes up less volume than other folders and becomes a rather neat compact shape. It's easy to put several in a small car trunk and still have space for other cargo. They stow well on a train or bus luggage rack and don't take up too much space in an elevator. They're small enough to bring right into an office and look more like luggage on wheels than a bicycle. And transit systems seem to be increasingly encouraging the use of bikes onboard. The question would be whether the niche is large enough to support sales volume that covers the costs of doing business: buying the bike in China, shipping, tariff, business insurance (liability and recall risk, etc.), advertising, storage, warehousing, labor, etc., and still leave some profit. Apparently Paul Pingus of Oragami Bicycles considered all of this and decided it wouldn't fly.

  22. #22
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Aside from the unpredictability of the scheduling and the (in)frequency of the buses running the route(s) is the lack of infrastructure at designated stops. In Tulsa, unless your trip starts at the downtown station and ends at the midtown station (or vice versa), you will pretty much be exposed to the elements while waiting. The designated stops consist of: street signs stating the route number (most common), benches w/Tulsa Transit logo and usually some kind of advertising on the seat back and a uncovered trash can, and there are a few that have a lean to type structure (plastered with even more adverts) covering a bench. These structures are a metal and lexan affair that is open to the street side and clear on the side the bus is approaching from- I forget if they have a light, but I do know there is no security cams- and they do little to protect you from the elements.

    Another thing that affects the timing of the regular, non-express route buses is the wheelchairs. Some of the buses are equipped with powered lifts while others have ramps that extend out and the bus "kneels down". The driver has flip up seats to make room for these riders, then they have to secure the wheels and buckle the seat belts (and then reverse the process when that person needs off). This takes time. Plus one wheel chair displaces 3-4 passengers and depending on rider volume, some people have to stand. Thing is, Tulsa Transit also has the Lift Program which is a small fleet of minivans equipped with ramps that offer door to door service.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
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  23. #23
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve View Post
    I use the bus 5 or 6 times a week and always use the bus schedule when determining the next arrival. This is what make bus use so frustrating is waiting an 30 minutes or more for the bus. I'll never understand why most people do not make use of schedules.

    Quite frankly, I would move to a city that had a lightrail stop within 1 mile of my house/apartment. If there wasn't lightrail in my city, I would look at the transit website and study which bus line provided the most service during week days and weekends. Then I would move within a mile of that bus line!
    How does reading a schedule make the next bus come any sooner?

    In regards to selecting a housing location, apparently your personal situation does not include any other consideration but proximity to a transit line. Many people, especially those with a family, have other considerations such as location of suitable employment (and the time required to commute,) housing costs, quality of housing, schools and neighbors, noise, etc.

  24. #24
    Senior Member zeppinger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chewybrian View Post
    If the bus ran door to door, every ten minutes, a lot of people would still not use it. There is a stigma to being on the bus, and it puts you in close contact with a 'different' slice of humanity. I don't know how you could ever solve these problems.

    Having ridden public transit in many different countries I can say that, in the US, the public transit crowd is some of the worst. They are the least hygienic, the rudest, and the poorest in comparison to those who own cars. I believe that this comes back to the huge disparity in wealth in the US. So, one way to fight having to sit next to homeless people and the "different" slice of humanity that you are talking about, is to reduce overall poverty levels through increased social services. Its pretty sad that we take such terrible care of our poor in this country that we can't even stand to sit next to them for a few minutes.

  25. #25
    winter wipeout kitty wipekitty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by overbyte View Post
    I agree that very few people ride bikes to the bus and even fewer take a folding bike onboard. Perhaps that would somewhat increase if they had a good solution to the onboard bike.
    One thing The Denver Area does very well is public transit (and personally, it was the only place I've lived where I ended up using public transit on a regular basis.)

    Their regional buses are all the larger Greyhound or charter bus style vehicles with luggage space underneath and bike racks on the front. The front bike racks hold two bikes, and the luggage space holds eight or nine bikes fully assembled. The result? Lots of people riding to the bus. On particularly nice days, the bike space would get too full, and a few people would volunteer to break down their bikes to fit even more in the luggage area. At this point, you're looking at a bus where 20-25% of passengers brought bikes.

    The area has a lot of features that make it ideal for public transit: good weather, increasingly bad traffic, required emissions testing, eco-friendly/health conscious citizens, and numerous employer and university subsidies for transit passes. The demand for this sort of service might not be as high in other areas.

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