Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Students adjust to new bus routes

The Department of Transportation Services is making efforts to help the UA community adjust to the new CrimsonRide system after cutting the number of routes from eight to four at the beginning of the semester, Ralph Clayton, assistant director of Transportation Services, said. The new routes are meeting many of the initial objectives, he added.

It might take a few weeks to get used to the new system, Clayton said, because changes are always hectic at first. New maps have been distributed and Clayton said the department is evaluating the routes in order to find out how to become more time efficient.

“After a week or two, when congestion isn’t so bad, I think it’s certainly going to improve,” he said.

Transportation Services decided to decrease the number of routes for several reasons, Clayton said. Many people were confused with the old routes because some buses were labeled as the same color, though they ran different routes, he said. For example, whereas there is a Gold route now, there used to be a Gold 1 route and a separate, unrelated one labeled Gold 2. Also, Clayton said, the CrimsonRide needed to cover more areas, since the University added the new nursing building and the new northeast parking lot. Transportation Services needed more spare buses in case a bus needed work, he said.

When Transportation Services took comments and feedback, Clayton said, students said they wanted more buses covering the areas from ten Hoor to Publix, which the Green and Blue routes now do.

“We had to evaluate the old system to find out what would be more efficient,” Clayton said.

Though the number of routes were cut, he said, no drivers lost their jobs.

Ella Ivory, who has been a Crimson Ride driver since the University implemented the system in 2007, said she’s pleased with the new routes, as they allow the bus drivers to drop students off closer to their classes.

“Once the students get used to the new routes, I think they’ll like it,” she said.

Ivory said the bus drivers had to prepare for the new routes during the summer.

“We rode all the routes and learned all the routes before school started,” she said.

In order to facilitate students without cars, Clayton said, the CrimsonRide will also begin a shopping route this semester. The route will start at the transit hub and take students to and from Midtown Village, University Mall and Target on Sundays from 1-6 p.m. The schedule can be viewed on the Crimson Ride website,

“Right now it’s actually a pilot program,” Clayton said.

Despite the changes to the Crimson Ride program, he said, the 348-Ride program will remain the same.

Mitchell Myers, a junior majoring in general health studies, said he likes the new routes, but thinks the CrimsonRide could still make some changes for the better.

“They need to post that they don’t have some of the same stops [as before],” Myers said.

Clayton said Transportation Services will continue to monitor and evaluate the new bus routes.

“We want to make the routes more efficient for the students and the University community,” he said.

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