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Old 01-06-2012, 06:43 PM
 
Location: Western Massachusetts
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^^^

actually the last time I was on a local bus was in Portland, OR. I can't remember the route, so I can't look up the time or stop frequency. It seemed like that there were lots of bus lines close together though.

Last edited by nei; 01-06-2012 at 09:49 PM..
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Old 01-06-2012, 07:31 PM
Status: "Corn well over knee high!" (set 18 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
That's a lot of stops. My local bus doesn't do that many, but much of the area it passes is that built up. Within my town, it does four (once in a while fifth one if there's a request) in about 1.3 miles about 7 minutes. The next few miles have a number of stops but they often don't get requested as they're low in both density (farmland nearby in a few spots) and population, and mostly (except for maybe one area), and the people there tend to use transit less.

I looked up the last time I use a bus in a bigger metro (Boston metro, though not in the city, Coolidge Corner to Harvard Square I can't remember the last time I took a bus in NYC, I use trains instead). It did 18 stops in 24 mins covering 3.6 miles. So, less stops than the RTD, but still a lot. It's a little less because there was a bridge on the route. I dunno if all the stops were requested, but it was close. The area was also very dense and urban, maybe much more than anywhere in Denver except for a few central neighborhoods.



In a dense neighborhood, distances to transit lines would be less as well as the wait.



I didn't expect agreement there! I would think it was fun, didn't expect you would. Or was that sarcasm?



My guess is it would vary depending on the area.

If you're actually interested enough, you could start a thread in the NYC forum. I did a skim in the NYC forum, found nothing on visiting nurses. Did find a poster saying using transit to get nursing jobs (non-visiting) at odd late night hours was inconvenient and some companies provided car service. I remember transit frequency is ok until midnight, and then one gets an unpleasant surprise (20 min, sometimes higher between trains).

So time of day for jobs may make a big difference in the convenience between driving and transit. Obviously traffic will be much lighter, though I have experience traffic jams after midnight.
The RTD has a policy of one stop ~every 2 blocks on local routes. On this particular run, kids were getting off at every stop. The kids got on the bus right outside the school door. The stop where my daughter got off is as close as possible to our house w/o the bus actually going into the subdivision. I don't think you could get much better than that.

No, I wasn't being sarcastic about the biking, though if you had to cover any distance, it wouldn't work too well. Also wouldn't work in bad weather, which is kind of unpredictable re: rain.
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Old 01-06-2012, 09:40 PM
 
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My own experiment was when I attended a college a few miles away from home, taking evening classes that I attended after work. This meant driving to school (about 5 miles) from downtown to the college. This took about 30 minutes. After I started attending full-time, I got a free bus pass from the college, and tried riding the bus instead. It took the same amount of time (30 minutes) and I didn't need a parking pass, and the bus drop-off point was actually closer to the main campus than the typical parking spot way out beyond farthest Egypt. As a bonus, I could take transit to work too, and leave my car at home, a trip that also took about the same amount of time as driving.

People bring up slow transit bus speeds, but most transit buses are slow because they are stuck in rush-hour traffic. In a car, you're just as stuck in traffic, and probably aren't going to go any faster. So if a visiting nurse drives from client to client in NYC, at least for the periods when she's on the road, she isn't going to go much faster than a nurse on the bus.
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Old 01-07-2012, 04:50 PM
 
Location: Planet Earth
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Originally Posted by wburg View Post
People bring up slow transit bus speeds, but most transit buses are slow because they are stuck in rush-hour traffic. In a car, you're just as stuck in traffic, and probably aren't going to go any faster. So if a visiting nurse drives from client to client in NYC, at least for the periods when she's on the road, she isn't going to go much faster than a nurse on the bus.
To be fair, unless the bus can bypass the traffic, they are likely going to travel slower than a car if they have to make stops.

Personally, as a bus rider, the thing that bothers me the most is traffic lights. The bus could have a green light, and it has to slow down to pick up one person, and it'll miss the light. Rinse and repeat at the next stop.
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Old 01-07-2012, 05:49 PM
 
Location: Western Massachusetts
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Originally Posted by checkmatechamp13 View Post
To be fair, unless the bus can bypass the traffic, they are likely going to travel slower than a car if they have to make stops.
Once you include parking, the total time may come out slower. For example, the bus ride from my town to the nearby state university is often no slower (and sometimes) than driving because there normally isn't (legal for most people) parking near campus buildings. So you have to factor in the time for a long walk from parking lot to building.

Quote:
Personally, as a bus rider, the thing that bothers me the most is traffic lights. The bus could have a green light, and it has to slow down to pick up one person, and it'll miss the light. Rinse and repeat at the next stop.
I hate watching that happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wburg View Post
So if a visiting nurse drives from client to client in NYC, at least for the periods when she's on the road, she isn't going to go much faster than a nurse on the bus.
The bus may still save time over driving in the denser parts of the city because a driver would have to find parking. It will to take a bit of time to find a space, and it might not be that close of a walk to where this nurse is trying to visit. The walking time from a transit stop would likely be shorter than the walking time from a parking space.

A transit user in the denser part of the city would be more likely to use the subway over the bus. (The NYC subway system gets over 3x the ridership of the bus system).
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Old 01-07-2012, 09:41 PM
Status: "Corn well over knee high!" (set 18 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Once you include parking, the total time may come out slower. For example, the bus ride from my town to the nearby state university is often no slower (and sometimes) than driving because there normally isn't (legal for most people) parking near campus buildings. So you have to factor in the time for a long walk from parking lot to building.



I hate watching that happen.



The bus may still save time over driving in the denser parts of the city because a driver would have to find parking. It will to take a bit of time to find a space, and it might not be that close of a walk to where this nurse is trying to visit. The walking time from a transit stop would likely be shorter than the walking time from a parking space.

A transit user in the denser part of the city would be more likely to use the subway over the bus. (The NYC subway system gets over 3x the ridership of the bus system).
Only if said nurse never has to wait for the bus/subway, and never has to walk some distance, e.g. a few blocks, to the next patient's home. I don't know why the walk from a parking space would be a longer walk than the walk from the transit stop.
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Old 01-07-2012, 09:57 PM
 
Location: Western Massachusetts
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Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Only if said nurse never has to wait for the bus/subway, and never has to walk some distance, e.g. a few blocks, to the next patient's home. I don't know why the walk from a parking space would be a longer walk than the walk from the transit stop.
My post was referring to NYC, mostly Manhattan. During much of the day, the wait times aren't that long, likely less than the time it takes to find parking (this might depend if there are metered spots that are more likely to have vacancies). Why should the walk to a parking space be less than transit? In my experience, the chance of finding a parking space within a few blocks can be hit or miss and you waste time circling blocks. Or the parking space could be a bit further than a few blocks.

Outside of NYC and the centers of a few other dense cities, the walk from a parking space to destination can be more time consuming than transit in universities (I mentioned that early, I think that's true on a lot of college campuses) and maybe old commercial centers of towns.
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Old 01-07-2012, 10:25 PM
Status: "Corn well over knee high!" (set 18 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
My post was referring to NYC, mostly Manhattan. During much of the day, the wait times aren't that long, likely less than the time it takes to find parking (this might depend if there are metered spots that are more likely to have vacancies). Why should the walk to a parking space be less than transit? In my experience, the chance of finding a parking space within a few blocks can be hit or miss and you waste time circling blocks. Or the parking space could be a bit further than a few blocks.

Outside of NYC and the centers of a few other dense cities, the walk from a parking space to destination can be more time consuming than transit in universities (I mentioned that early, I think that's true on a lot of college campuses) and maybe old commercial centers of towns.
Visiting nurses are going into residential areas, not commercial centers, where the transit service isn't as frequent as in commercial areas. I would imagine this is true even in NYC. They're certainly not going onto college campuses. If a college student would need the services of a VN, which would be unusual, she would visit said student at their home, which unless they lived in the dorms, would be some sort of building in a residential area. I worked in both Denver and Jefferson Counties in CO, and in Champaign, IL, all places that have residential colleges (University of Denver, Colorado School of Mines, University of Illinois), and I never had a college student for a patient.
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Old 01-08-2012, 10:50 AM
 
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In my college example, the walk from the campus transit center was always shorter than the walk from the parking lot. The university was set up with a pedestrian campus in the center and large parking areas on either end. Because it's a commuter campus, there are always thousands of cars and often you have to walk the equivalent of a couple of city blocks through the parking lot before reaching the campus proper. But the bus drops you off right on the campus, and didn't take any longer than driving, because both took the same narrow road, and often driving to campus meant getting stuck behind the bus! And that's for an astoundingly car-centric university in a postwar neighborhood designed around the car.
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Old 01-08-2012, 11:11 AM
 
Location: Western Massachusetts
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Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Visiting nurses are going into residential areas, not commercial centers, where the transit service isn't as frequent as in commercial areas. I would imagine this is true even in NYC. They're certainly not going onto college campuses.
Yes, I realize that they are going into residential areas. From my memory the wait times are small, on average less than 5 minutes during regular working hours at least. Finding a parking space can take longer than that, sometimes much longer. I take that in all the cities you're familiar with finding a nearby parking space quickly in the densest residential neighborhoods is a given?

I'm referring to the densest, inner parts of the New York, maybe where the densest 2 maybe 2.5 million people live or so. Most of them are using the same transit lines as the central business district so the frequency is the same and distance to transit lines is usually still small. The whole area is also very mixed use, it's not like there are long stretches where there's only residential and no businesses.

The university example was separate, I should have made that more clear. I didn't mean to imply a nurse would be visiting them. I've been in several college campuses where you can't park closer than a 10 minute walk where I want to go. But the bus can take you closer. Big campuses but in a small town not a big city. I often forget to add in parking time when driving for both big cities and universities.
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