Durango Transit system will change its evening and Saturday routes in 2015 to serve different areas.
Saturday service will be going from 30-minute service to hourly service, a move that should allow buses to run on time, said Kent Harris, Durango’s transit operations manager.
“It’s a better use of those two buses we use on Saturday,” he said.
On Saturdays, many riders are requesting stops along U.S. Highway 160 west of the DoubleTree Hotel and in the Crestview neighborhood, which is west of Main Avenue. This is causing major transit delays, he said.
To help address ridership needs, one bus on Saturday will start serving those areas.
“Saturday is really our biggest problem for coverage,” Harris said.
It will be a cost-neutral change for the department. Fewer buses are needed on Saturday because ridership is 60 percent lower those days than a weekday.
One loop will stop at the Centennial Center, Walmart, Highway 160 to the Wildcat Condos and the Crestview neighborhood.
The other loop will serve Fort Lewis College, and the major change will be an extension of its loop route. The bus will still start at the Transit Center and run up College Drive to Goeglein Gulch Road to Florida Road. The bus will then head northeast to Ball Lane and then head back down Florida Road and make a loop via 32nd Street to East Third Avenue. It will head down East Third Avenue to Memorial Park before heading south on Riverview Drive. The bus will then turn back up Florida Road and stop at Fort Lewis again. It will serve Eighth Street on its way to the Transit Center.
The evening bus that runs from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. and serves Fort Lewis will see a similar loop extension in 2015. Currently, from Fort Lewis the bus goes straight down Florida Road to Camino del Rio and back to the Transit Center.
As part of the change, the bus will now serve 32nd Street, Memorial Park and Riverview Drive before going back to the Transit Center. The evening bus will no longer serve three stops on Florida Road from Quasar Street to Folsom Place.
The advisory board’s Fort Lewis representative, Chase Gaumond, said students supported the change, because many students live in areas along the loop extension.
“Everybody thought it was a good idea, that was expanding our service area,” Gaumond said.
The buses will still stop on request.