No More Buses On Congress Avenue

June 9, 2014 by Kate Harrington

Beginning June 3, Capital Metro moved some of its downtown bus routes off of Congress Avenue as part of detours for the X Games. But now that the extreme sporting event has packed up and left town, most of the detoured buses will remain on their new routes, part of an effort by Capital Metro to avoid delays and detours that affect routes each time a special event takes place downtown.

Instead of running on Congress, Capital Metro routes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 19, 21, 22, 30, 37, 122, 127, 142, 990, as well as Night Owl routes, will now use Guadalupe and Lavaca Streets to get to downtown points.

“The shift of service off Congress was planned in 2010 as part of Capital Metro’s Service Plan 2020 to address daily operations and identify key improvements that would create more direct, reliable trips to enhance the customer experience, and fewer stops to increase service speed,” Capital Metro’s blog says.

Transferring the downtown routes onto Guadalupe and Lavaca, Capital Metro says, will make it easier for bus riders to transfer between between Local, Express and MetroRapid services. Those streets also have new dedicated bus lanes with companion bike lanes that bypass traffic betweek MLK, Jr. Boulevard and Cesar Chavez Street, which means buses can move independently of congested traffic.

City officials hope that even small changes like the new routes will help attract more people to transit options like the bus, and in turn help combat the city’s ever-growing traffic.

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Written by Kate Harrington

Kate is a former reporter, most recently for the Austin Business Journal, where she covered real estate, economic development and transportation. Since 2010 she has been running Thumbtack Communications. Thumbtack provides writing, editing and marketing services. Before moving to Austin in 2002 Kate lived in her native New England, which she still visits often to escape the Texas heat.