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June 2007 - Posts

Trains Pay Off
Is it worth it to build trains in a city? Economically, yes. A June 2007 article in Railway Age cites a new study by the University of North Texas Center for Economic Development and Research that concludes rail transit has a big payoff. In fact, the Read More...
RideStore Fields Questions from Fares to Schedules
Every day, hundreds of customers walk through our RideStores - at 1900 Main and at 1001 Travis - to get information or buy passes. LaTonya McCoy, a RideStore customer information specialist who's been at METRO nine years, says route information is Read More...
Crowded Trains: No Room For More Passengers
If you're one of the hundreds of commuters trying to squeeze into our trains at peak rush hours going to or from the Texas Medical Center, you'll appreciate the New York transit agency's dilemma. The New York Times ha d a piece in Tuesday's Read More...
Strategies for Going Carless with Children
Previously, I wrote about Chris Balish 's book, How to Live Well Without Owning a Car , and some of you with children said there was no way you could get around without a car. Balish argues that you don't have to do all those errands with the Read More...
New System Map Helps You Get Around
You could call her our human global positioning satellite. Sheila Robbins, a 7-and-a-half-year veteran at METRO, designs all our maps and public guides. Without her, both riders and drivers would be lost. Her latest work: our new system map that shows Read More...
Out of the Office
I will be out of the office the week of June 18. I'll post again when I return on Monday, June 25. Read More...
Our Love Affair with Cars Remains Strong
Despite escalating gasoline prices, most people continue to drive to work - and most of them drive alone. That's the latest analysis by the U.S. Census Bureau of data from the American Community Survey. Based on 2005 data, the survey found that the Read More...
Google Adds Transit Icons to Maps
If you're in Honolulu and you want to know how to get from Waikiki Beach to the Ala Moana shopping center by bus, just go to Google Maps. Starting June 9, Google has put transit station icons on its maps in 12 cities. Go to the link google.com/transit Read More...
METRO Tops List for Most Passengers Per Rail Car
METRO's 7.5-mile rail line carries more passengers per rail car every year than any other train system nationwide. That's according to data from Metro Magazine, a monthly industry magazine based in Torrance, Calif., which conducts an annual survey Read More...
METRO Goes to the Movies
A garden gnome plummets from the sky into the hands of a morning suburban commuter, the shocked man tosses it behind him and the earth rumbles. Out from the earth, a METRO bus emerges....and Jay, our MTTV reporter decked in bathrobe and sipping coffee, Read More...
Cameras on Buses
Transit agencies nationwide are hoping the electronic eye can help catch crime on wheels. From the Big Apple to small town farming communities, mass transit agencies are relying on cameras to record criminal activity and help make passengers feel safer. Read More...
Yes, the Q Card is Coming
Many of you have asked when we're launching the Q Card. Here's the latest of what we can tell you now. We are still testing the card. We want to work out as many problems as we can before we roll it out. We have 3,500 cards deployed in the system Read More...
When to Use Emergency Phone Numbers 211 and 311
Yesterday, I wrote about the annual mock drill some 45 agencies - including METRO - went through in order to prepare for a hurricane. I mentioned calling the phone number 311 when a hurricane hits, if you need transportation assistance to evacuate the Read More...
Preparing for a Category 5 Hurricane
In what officials are billing the largest hurricane exercise in Texas history, more than 45 agencies went through a mock hurricane exercise today, responding to emergencies triggered by "Hurricane Eunice," a Category 5 hurricane. For METRO officials, Read More...
The Company Stars that Help Make Our RideShare Program Work
Sharing a ride - either by car or van - is a great way to get to work if a bus route isn't convenient to where you live or work. At METRO, vanpool boardings increased 33.4 percent from January 2006 to December 2006. Part of that successful hike in Read More...
Grooming Tips for Biking to Work in Houston's Heat
Last week, I blogged about Chris Balish's book, How to Live Well Without a Car and promised to give more of his tips on how to do it when you have harsh weather elements. First, he advises you moderate your exertion level when you commute by mass Read More...
The Thrill of the Ride
Today's post is from guest blogger Donna Lane, who works here as a stakeholder affairs representative. She's the liason between the community and METRO on the Uptown Corridor, conducting community meetings in that neighborhood. It was after 5:00 Read More...
Son of a Train Operator Wins Top Spelling Award
Train operators nationwide should feel proud of their profession today. The son of a Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) operator captured the nation's top spelling award by correctly spelling "serrefine" - a noun for small forceps. Thirteen-year-old Read More...