Pullman transit continues to spread ridership

Bus routes changed; Express 1, Express 2 combined to ApartmentLand Express, one Downtown Route



A student boards a bus near the Chinook Student Center, Sep. 2.

ALEXANDRIA BUCK, Evergreen reporter

Pullman transit recently decided to make changes to on and off campus bus routes, impacting both students and ridership. 

Matt Young, Communications Coordinator for the City of Pullman, said that the community routes: Blue, Loop, Silver and Paradise have not been changed. However, the formerly known Express 1 and Express 2 have been reconfigured into ApartmentLand Express, with three buses, and one Downtown Route for the same total of four buses.  

The bus services Wheat and Lentil end at 10:15 p.m. instead of running until midnight. This is because ridership on the evening Wheat and Lentil routes averaged three riders per loop after 10 p.m., he said.  

“We have the numbers,” he said.  

The transit team takes in all the information that they have about the different routes and the ridership, then they go to the City Council proposing a change. Young said that at this meeting they request the approval for these changes every spring.  

“We’re looking at our routes to see how we can better serve the community, or how we may have to pivot and change our service to the community based on a lot of different things,” Young said.  

If there is a way to increase service, Pullman Transit will consider that and reversely if there is a stop with less and less ridership, they will consider changing it, he said.  

“I will take it in the afternoon on Tuesday, Thursdays, and on weekends,” Uzokamaka Edemuzor, freshman prepharmacy major, said.  

She said that she has not noticed a change in the overall business of the route.  

Edemuzor said that since she takes late classes, she must walk home late.

 “I don’t really feel safe while walking from a late class,” Edemuzor said. “If there was an option for a late-night bus I would take it home, instead of walking home in the dark.”  

However, Young explained that there just is not enough ridership during that time to justify having a bus run that late.  

“If things change and we see more of a need in that area and we have more bus drivers, then we are always willing to revisit things to help service the community,” he said.  

Young said that with more than one route there is a spread of ridership. When two Express routes exist, one route tends to carry more riders the other. When there is only one route to cover a combined area serviced by the previous two routes, the frequency is increased, and the imbalance of ridership is reduced. 

“The intention [of these transportation changes] is to provide the best service possible, with the resources available. The Campus Route circulates through the core of campus every 15 minutes, and a variety of routs continue to serve the full length of Stadium Way, in both directions,” said Young.