Roberto Gonzalez, of Capital Metro Planning, met with disembarking riders on Tuesday to hand out flyers about the move and answer questions.
by Ann Fowler
After months of rider speculation, Capital Metro announced Tuesday that the Park & Ride facility at William Cannon and U.S. Highway 290 West would be moved temporarily to the ACC Pinnacle campus during construction of the continuous flow intersection. The change is effective as of Monday, December 9, and will likely last until the summer.
The current location, owned by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) but contracted to Capital Metro, has seen a steady decrease of parking spaces as more room has been taken for construction equipment.
Melissa Ayala, communications specialist for Capital Metro, told the Gazette, “Capital Metro has been working with TxDOT thus far to co-exist at the Oak Hill Park & Ride during construction. However, the project has become more complex and as a result, Capital Metro will temporarily close the Oak Hill Park & Ride effective Monday, December 9, and relocate to the ACC Pinnacle Campus—Lot G (weekdays only) until construction ends.”
The move comes none too soon. Rider Xiaoyan Dai reported that she arrived for the 7:20 a.m. bus, to find only two parking spots left for the riders of the 7:40, 8:00 and 8:20 a.m. buses.
How riders feel about the move depends on which side of the ‘Y’ they live. Several riders said the move to ACC will save them a trip through the congested ‘Y’ intersection. But Jane Osterhout is not one of them. She said, “ACC isn’t nearly as convenient for me. Now I’ll have to fight the traffic at the ‘Y’ at Oak Hill.”
Schedule is another concern of riders. For a few weeks, the Oak Hill Flyer will maintain its schedule from the Park & Ride despite its move southwest of the ‘Y.’ That means each bus will arrive at least ten minutes later to its downtown destinations.
Ayala said the schedule would be adjusted. She said, “There will be schedule changes during our January Service Change period, where we have adjusted the schedule to arrive earlier. Those changes will take effect January 26, 2014.”
Roberto Gonzalez, of Capital Metro Planning, met with disembarking riders on Tuesday to hand out flyers about the move and answer questions. He said bus drivers would have an option of routes to the Park & Ride:
• Mopac to U.S. 290 West
• Mopac to William Cannon to U.S. 290 West
• Mopac to Southwest Parkway to William Cannon to U.S. 290 West
The two neighborhood (Scenic Brook, Westcreek) buses will remain the same in the mornings: pick up in the Scenic Brook area, stop at the Park & Ride, pick up at the Westcreek stop. But the afternoon route will change.
Gonzalez said that after the move, Westcreek residents will disembark at Oakclaire Drive prior to the stop at the Park & Ride. Scenic Brook area residents will reach their neighborhood after stopping at the Park & Ride.
Dai was one of several riders hoping that Capital Metro will find a new home for the Oak Hill Park & Ride. She said, “The [current] P&R is the worst. It is hard to get in and out. It is not safe. There are not enough parking spots. I wish they will never go back to the old one.”
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