Due to COVID-19 social distancing restrictions, MTD held a virtual public hearing on May 20, 2020, to outline proposed Fall Service Changes.
After the hearing, the community was invited to submit public comments for one week, from May 20, 2020 at 12:00 PM until May 27, 2020 at 12:00 PM. MTD Staff would like to thank everyone in the community who took the time to submit questions and comments; we welcomed the opportunity to provide clarification and answer questions.
The public comments MTD received, and our responses, are summarized below. Look for these service changes to take effect with the start of the 2020 – 2021 Service Year on Sunday, August 16, 2020.
Do you have a concern or compliment to share with us, or a question you need answered? Give us a call at 217.384.8188, or Contact Us here. We’re here to help.
I don’t know what a Far Side bus stop is. Where is the Sixth & Armory South West Far Side bus stop?
Far Side bus stops are located immediately after an intersection, allowing buses to pass through an intersection before stopping for passenger loading and unloading. In the new service year, bus routes that travel south on Sixth St. through the intersection with Armory will stop on the Far Side of the Sixth & Armory intersection, by the Band Building. This affects the 4W Blue, the 9A Brown, and the 13S Silver. Buses will no longer stop at the NW Corner of Sixth & Armory, and again at the NW Corner of Sixth & Gregory; buses will only stop once at this Far Side stop.
Thank you for putting this online! Please consider doing this every year.
COVID-19 social distancing restrictions have made it necessary for MTD, and other community resources, to find alternative ways to disseminate important information. We're glad to hear that our Virtual Public Hearing was successfully able to provide information on proposed service changes that are important to our passengers. Our Planning and Technology Services teams will keep this feedback in mind as we prepare public information for our 2021-2022 Service Year.
Thank you for the proposed iStop changes. I think this will help passengers boarding at the Illini Union, especially.
The District is excited to introduce new iStops, and to implement the additional route eligibility described in our Service Year summary. We’re looking forward to the simplification and improved access and efficiency this service change will provide.
I don't mind the changes at Sixth & Armory, but how can I get to the South Quad if the 1S Yellow won't serve Sixth & Gregory?
The District worked closely with the University, the cities of Urbana and Champaign, and MCORE engineers on the design of the new Armory MCORE corridor in light of operational and safety concerns posed by infrastructure at Sixth & Gregory.
For passengers who frequent areas like the South Quad or Lot E-14, for example, alternatives at Sixth & Gregory do remain in the form of trips on board the 9A Brown and the 10W Gold. Other routes that will continue to serve Sixth & Gregory include the 4E Blue, the 13S Silver, and the 21 Raven.
Passengers can call us at 217.384.8188 any time to get help planning a trip. We look forward to introducing our passengers to all of the great MCORE infrastructure and bus stop improvements that have been made upon their return to campus.
I’m concerned about 100 Yellow Late Night routing at Market Place. Will the bus run on Marketview or on Anthony Dr.? Will I board the 100 Yellow Late Night on Anthony Dr.?
The 100 Yellow Late Night routing will travel south on Neil St. onto Anthony, instead of Marketview, bypassing Marketview Center. When the 100 Yellow Late Night service is in operation, businesses at Marketview Center are closed. Late Night service will be provided at the NW corner of Neil & Marketview, where there are controlled traffic signals; there will be no stops east along Anthony Dr. toward Market. The stops currently located at Marketview & Convenience Pl., near McDonald’s and Kohls, will no longer be served during Late Night service.
Do you have plans to have a bus stop near the new Costco being built west of Market Place Mall? If the 1/100 Yellow and 2 Red aren’t going to use Market Place Outer Drive, how will Costco customers connect to service?
The changes being made to the 1/100 Yellow and 2/20 Red routing at Market Place Mall are a result of Market Place’s request that MTD not operate on mall property. The District is in communication with the Costco developer, the property manager, and the city of Champaign to analyze potential stop locations and determine how Costco can best be served. The 1/100 Yellow is still going to use the north side of Outer Drive, and property managers are supportive of MTD serving Costco near Hobby Lobby, likely on the west side of the street. Costco will not be served by the 2 Red unless the 2 Red trip is serving Ashland Park as part of the S or X footnotes.
Expanding iStop route eligibility is great, but I’m concerned about you including non-campus routes. Students will need to show their iCards on their return trips on these routes, and checking for iCards on campus might be a good reminder that they need their iCards off campus.
The District’s new simplified and expanded approach to iStops we feel will eliminate confusion surrounding route eligibility on campus, improve access and efficiency at busy campus stops by reducing time spent validating fare, and increase opportunities to use all-door boarding. We’re working on new and improved passenger education materials and messaging surrounding expectations at both iStops and on community routes, and will have new online resources available for new and returning University students, faculty, and staff.
I’m worried that you’re removing the early morning W and T footnotes from the 10E/W Gold that starts just after 6:30AM on weekdays. There might be people that need these buses for early morning errands. Is the 10E Gold change going to affect the first 22N Illini that leaves the Union at 6:45AM?
The route deviations that occur on the first morning 10E/W Gold trips are remnants of an abandoned Universal Transfer on campus that no longer occurs, thanks to MCORE improvements. Feedback was that these trip deviations caused confusion for both passengers and Operators. The stops at the Illini Union and Transit Plaza provide more access to a robust selection of transfer opportunities. Because there are less than four rides per day on these trips, this change also allows for more efficient routing. The first 22N Illini trip leaving the Illini Union at 6:45am will remain unchanged.
Removing the J footnote from the 5:20PM 13S Silver trip at Lincoln Square will create a large gap in service between 5:10PM and 5:40PM.
It is correct that this change will introduce a 30-minute gap in 13S Silver service at Lincoln Square, but coverage will not be compromised. Riders can access Springfield Ave. via the 10W Gold, and get to Green St. on board the 5W Green. The confusion generated by this deviation outweighs the 0.9 rides provided by this trip per day. Eliminating this trip deviation provides improved consistency system wide, makes our schedules easier to understand, and encourages ridership.
Changing the 50W Green Evening Timepoints at Urbana Meijer and Windsor & Vine will mean random layovers on Philo Rd., from Silver to Colorado to Sunnycrest. This will block the road. Wouldn’t it be better to move layovers to Orchard Downs?
In the evenings during the week and on Saturdays, the 50W Green regularly runs over 2 minutes early in Southeast Urbana, which has resulted in unintended layovers occurring near Philo & Colorado. These unintended layovers are undesirable, and when identified, we try to find ways to eliminate them, as is the case with these Timepoint changes. Our Planning team is confident that slowing the route down where the time can be afforded will keep the 50W Green moving fluidly between Orchard Downs and Lincoln Square, and provide additional opportunities for us to board passengers at the popular Meijer stop location, and along Windsor Rd. Some of our 12 Teal trips do layover at Orchard Downs, but for several reasons, it would not be efficient for the 50W Green to do so.
Synopsis of Changes
One of the more exciting changes proposed for Fall 2020 is the addition of new iStops and route eligibility within the University District. iStops are special designated stops located on and near campus, as well as at ONE Illinois North, ONE Illinois South, Capstone Quarters, and Campus Circle. At iStops, to expedite boarding, it is unnecessary for anyone to pay a fare or show any sort of a pass or ID. At the start of MTD’s new service year, all routes at designated iStops will be eligible for this enhanced boarding procedure. Additional iStops will also be added along White Street and at Research Park. This simplified and expanded approach to iStops will eliminate confusion surrounding route eligibility, and improve access and efficiency at busy campus stops.
There will be a change to the 1/100 Yellow and 2/20 Red routing at Market Place Mall. Instead of using Market Place Outer Drive, the route will change to operate Anthony to Neil to Marketview to Market. As a result, the designated stops along Market Place Outer Drive will be eliminated.
The 1/100S Yellow routing on campus will also change slightly at Sixth & Gregory. At the start of the new service year, southbound routing will change to Sixth to Armory to Fourth to Gregory, from Sixth to Gregory to First. The northbound route will operate in reverse – First to Gregory to Fourth to Armory to Sixth. These changes are being made to utilize all of the great infrastructure and bus stop improvements that have been made along the Armory MCORE corridor, and to improve operational and safety issues. For example, the turn at Sixth & Gregory has historically been a difficult one. The new turn that will be executed from Sixth to Armory was redesigned with MTD in mind.
The 2C Red currently scheduled to depart Lincoln Square at 8:38AM will be changed to an 8:40AM departure.
Two Timepoints for the 50W Green Weekday Evening and 50W Green Saturday Evening service in Urbana will be modified. The Timepoint at Windsor & Vine will be one minute later, and the Timepoint at Urbana Meijer will be two minutes later. These changes are being made to prevent an unintended layover along Philo Road.
There are about six to ten Timepoints assigned to each route. These are the columns that structure the route schedule. Operators cannot leave timepoints early. They must wait until the exact minute before they can depart a stop, allowing you to estimate your departure and arrival times.
On Weekday Evenings, the Timepoint at Windsor & Vine will change from :01 and :31 to :02 and :32, beginning at 7:02PM. The Timepoint at Urbana Meijer will change from :05 and :35 to :07 and :37, beginning at 7:07PM. Similarly, for 50W Green Saturday service, the Timepoint at Windsor & Vine will be one minute later beginning at 6:33PM, and the Timepoint at Urbana Meijer will be two minutes later, beginning at 6:37PM.
Two trips on the 70E Grey Evening and Saturday will be extended. The 70E Grey trips that currently end at Lincoln Square on weekday evenings at 11:07PM and 11:29PM will be extended, and will instead end at Main & Brady at 11:18PM and 11:40PM, respectively. Similarly, the 70E Grey Saturday trips that currently end at Lincoln Square on Saturday evenings at 10:58PM and 11:33PM will also be extended to end at Main & Brady, at 11:09PM and 11:44PM, respectively. The extension of these evenings trips affords more SE Urbana passengers the ability to return to their homes later at night, after, say, ending a second-shift job, or running late-night errands.
Two footnotes, explaining two different diversions – one for the 10W Gold and one for the 10E Gold route – will be removed in the new service year. The 10E/W Gold will no longer deviate from its regular routing. The W footnote/diversion will be removed from the 10W Gold trip scheduled to depart Lincoln Square at 6:35AM. The T footnote/diversion will be removed from the 10E Gold trip that is currently scheduled to depart Mattis & Broadmoor at 6:25AM. The new departure time at Mattis & Broadmoor will be 6:32AM.
The J footnote will be removed from the 13S Silver. Currently, the 13N Silver due to depart Lincoln Square at 5:20PM continued as a 2U Red at the Illini Union. With the new service year, this 13N Silver trip will end at Lincoln Square at 5:20PM, and will not continue as a 13S Silver.
Finally, some stops in Campustown are being moved and/or consolidated. The current stops at Sixth & Armory (NW Corner) and Sixth & Gregory (NW Corner) will be consolidated to Sixth & Armory (SW Far Side) and Fifth & Armory (NW Far Side).
The stop at Fourth & Armory (SE Corner) will be changed to Fifth & Armory (SW Corner).
The stops on North Goodwin for the 22/220 Illini will be consolidated, and the stop at Goodwin & Clark (SE Corner) will be eliminated.