Restructuring bus service in Bowie, MD

August 29th, 2013

Earlier this year Metro conducted a comprehensive service evaluation study of the bus routes serving Bowie, MD.  Metro is currently looking at implementing some of the recommendations that emerged from the study.  Three options are under consideration:

Option 1: Instead of operating to New Carrollton Station, all service on the B21, B22, B29 and C28 routes would terminate at the Bowie Park & Ride lot.  To reach the New Carrollton Station, riders on these routes would connect with a new shuttle service at the Bowie Park & Ride lot. The shuttle service would travel via John Hanson Highway and operate every 10-15 minutes.

Option 2: Routes B21, B22, B29 would continue to operate through the Bowie Park & Ride lot to New Carrollton Station. The frequency on each route would increase during rush hours to an even 30 minutes. Schedules would be coordinated between the three routes at the Bowie Park & Ride lot to provide a 10 minute service frequency to and from the New Carrollton Station.

Option 3: This option is the same as Option 2 but would also eliminate service to the Crofton Park & Ride lot on B29.  This route would, instead, serve the Bowie Health Center, Bowie Senior Center, Bowie Town Center, and Gateway Center.  B31 trips would also be converted to B29 trips.

The maps below illustrates the changes proposed. Please review and let us know what you think.  We will also be presenting these options at our upcoming public hearings.

Bowie Option 1

Map illustrating Bowie routes restructuring Option 1. Click image for larger version.


Bowie Option 3

Map showing Bowie routes restructuring Option 3. Click image for larger version.


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  1. Carl Siegmund
    September 4th, 2013 at 10:35 | #1

    Metro should release proposed timetables for each Option. We need to know what normal weekday service will be like under each Option. I’m undecided between Option 1 and Option 2 as it hard to tell which would provide more reliable service. I say ‘No’ to Option 3 as we need to do everything we can to ease congestion on Route 3 between Crofton and Route 50. Getting rid of bus service to Crofton only hurts the loyal riders who commute to Crofton and this Option will make traffic worse as you’ll be putting more cars on the road.

    Bottom line: we just want the buses to run on time. That’s the minumum requirement and Metro is not meeting it. Changing the routes, having a hub-spoke model, and making these other proposed changes just reeks of a smoke and mirrors operation. Run the buses on time. No bus bunching at the Bowie Park and Ride. Tell your drivers to use the HOV line on Route 50, not the slow lane.

  2. Tom Rampulla
    September 5th, 2013 at 18:22 | #2

    I’d rather see fewer pickup and drop off times in Crofton rather than eliminating the Crofton routes altogether. Who would want to put up with Option 1 (spoke & hub)? It’s already a 35 minute bus ride from Crofton to New Carrollton so why would anyone want to spend another 15 minutes on a bus transfer?

    Also, the June 2013 report reflects ridership data that was collected during December 2012. December is the lowest ridership with Christmas break and the New Years holiday skewing the data. If Metro was purposely trying to eiminate a route, they planned the perfect month to collect the data.

  3. September 23rd, 2013 at 15:18 | #3

    I favor Option 2. I catch the B22 near home during a.m. rush hour. It is usually over half full when we get to Park and Ride. All of us would have to get off the bus, wait (sometimes in bad weather) up to 15 minutes, then get back on the bus, and that’s if things run “normally.” My commute is 3 segments and 90 min. each way. I don’t want to add another 15 min. and spend more time outside in cold and/or rain in a line. Option 2 is horrendous for those who ride B22, B29 or C28 and catch it in the “neighborhoods” before Park and Ride. Bowie bus service needs to put needs of rush hour commuters first.

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