Rochester, N.Y. – The University of Rochester is the area’s largest employer with more than 20,000 employees. Many of the drive to work and parking is at a premium.
Why don’t more employees use public transportation?
“I live in Greece and the buses don’t run out there when I have to be to work,” said Donna Maio.
“I stopped taking the bus because they were not on time,” said Irfan Rahman.
“Convenience with the hours that I work, it’s not convenient to wait for a bus or I’d have to come in really early or stay a little later,” said Colleen Neary.
UR scrapped plans to put a transit center at College Town because of cost and the project timeline. The college, however, has not given up on the idea of more workers taking the bus. The Rochester Genesee Regional Transportation Authority is ready to help.
“We’re partnering with them to make the destinations easier to get to and to make a way to view public transportation much more attractive,” said RGRTA CEO Bill Carpenter.
RGRTA visited the University of Washington in Seattle, which pays for workers to use the bus. RGRTA and the U of R are studying where workers live and where routes make the most sense. It’s possible some routes could bypass the downtown transfer point.
“Everybody got to go downtown. It would be nice if we don’t have to stop downtown,” said Aldwin Perez, who takes the bus to UR every day from the Lake and Ridge area. Perez hopes the downtown bus terminal under construction makes the experience better.
“What we will be doing is making it easier for them, whether it’s how our routes are designed or how the fare is paid,” said Carpenter. “We like people to get to work. We’re going to try to make it more convenient. We will make it more convenient for them.”