The Port Authority of Allegheny County introduced a new outbound bus service route – the 69A – this month in an attempt to improve service. This route will run along Forbes Avenue from Atwood Street in Oakland to Regent Square. The 69A will operate weekdays from 4:05 until 9:35 pm, with busses arrivingevery 30 minutes.
The Port Authority hopes this new route will ease crowding on other routes, particularly the 61A, 61B, 61C, 501, and EBO routes. Those who have taken a bus along these routes during rush hour are familiar with the overcrowding. The routes typically require very close contact with other riders.
HSS senior Raza Ali said, "It's good that they are trying to ease this terrible problem."
Alex Arbit, alumnus and former Port Authority bus rider commented,"Usually I didn't care [about the crowding.] Except ... when people had to get off, it was difficult and bothersome. You had to ensure you could fight your way up to the front to get off in time."
The Port Authority is hopeful that the 69A will change that.
According to Port Authority, its 225 routes transport an average of 260,000 riders each day. Last year, 75 million people rode Port Authority transportation. An annual pass costs $660, but Metropool, an online commuter resource, estimates that the average cost of a yearly, 15 mile round trip commute is around $2,000 or higher depending on local taxes and parking rates, making public transit a better deal.
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