Saturday, June 9, 2012

A SENSIBLE IDEA

You all may or may not know that UTA has two bus garages in Salt Lake County: Central and Meadowbrook.  Now you all know.  There is also a garage in Ogden and one in Orem (called "Timpanogos").

Central and Meadowbrook have different kinds of buses and, until recently, ran completely separate routes.  Someone as nerdy smart as I am, when waiting for a bus in the greater Salt Lake area, would know more or less what types of bus to expect to see, based on which garage the route in question was being run out of.  Such people would generally be possessed of the serenity which is born of predictability.

Always having certain routes come out of certain garages did lead to a certain amount of inefficiency.  I'm not even going to try to describe the situation without a picture.  Observe:


As you can see, a lot of trouble, not to mention a decent amount of gas, could be saved by simply having the 200 come out of Central and the 320 out of Meadowbrook.  I was talking to a bus driver one day who told me he worked a split shift, and that for both halves of his shift he started out at Meadowbrook and drove to Central Station (across the street from the Central Garage).  I guess it's not surprising that this bright idea occurred to UTA independently of me.

The first day after the most recent change day, I was startled to see that the 200 coming to pick me up was a bus I had previously associated with Central.  I got on it, and it still went to all the same places, so I hadn't completely missed the boat.  Over the next few days, I saw lots of other "mixtures" between Central and Meadowbrook routes, and I eventually put the pieces together.

It's a sensible idea, even if it does mean that the writing is sometimes the wrong color.

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