City Wants High-Tech Traffic Control

Posted by Columbus Transit On June - 28 - 2010

The City of Columbus wants to invest $36.8 million to purchase a high-tech system that would give traffic controllers direct access to coordinate traffic lights across the city. When traffic backs up because of an accident, congestion, or re-routing, traffic controllers could change lights with a flick of a switch to get cars moving more quickly through intersections.

COTA Offices Move Downtown

Posted by Columbus Transit On June - 28 - 2010

The Central Ohio Transit Authority moved its headquarters downtown recently into the newly remodeled building at 33 North High Street. The $13.6 million renovation of the 10-story downtown building includes a new customer-service counter where passengers can purchase tickets and extensive green features such as energy-saving lighting. COTA is in the process of applying for LEED Certification for the renovation. COTA will utilize seven of the 10 stories and will rent the other three out. Notably, the building does not include parking as COTA employees are expected to utilize the bus.

YPCOTA Kicks Off

Posted by Columbus Transit On June - 17 - 2010

Young Professionals Columbus and COTA have teamed up to encourage 'social transit' through a month-long initiative combining transit with social networking.

New Parking Meter Rates Coming

Posted by Columbus Transit On June - 17 - 2010

Crews are changing the parking meter prices and times on meters in the downtown and Short North area, as well as adding 400 new parking meters to previously free spaces. The changes come after a long debate about how best to up rates to help pay for the construction of a new convention center hotel. The original rate change, pulled from the funding plan for the shelved Columbus Streetcar initiative, upset business owners in the up-and-coming Gay Street area and downtown. A commission revised the plan which was approved and is now being implemented.

Improving COTA

Posted by Columbus Transit On 4:33 PM

COTA already is improving its service with the tax increase approved by voters. However, what are some other improvements that could upgrade Central Ohio service? The Dispatch published a story with a slideshow of proposed improvements downtown, among them new lighting for bus stops. While this would be a nice addition, perhaps COTA should take a look at Denmark's bus system, given the idea that flexibility is important to riders. The picture here shows a "3" indicating how many minutes until the next bus on this route arrives. In addition, the time is displayed online and can be texted to phones. This type of information greatly increases the ease of use and could convince people to switch to transit. Compare this advanced bus stop to Columbus' signage and you can see the possible upgrades.

3 Response to "Improving COTA"

  1. That signage in Denmark was incredibly helpful when I spent some time there. It made it possible to use the bus system without having to look everything up on the internet beforehand.

    Even as they are, Columbus's bus stop signs are much more informative than Cincinnati's (which only show the route numbers that stop at that stop). I made a couple of comps of what Cincinnati could do with their signage to make it more informative:

    Normal stop

    Downtown stop:
    Front
    Back

    The signs show the route numbers and destinations at the stop and the hours they run, as well as nearby stops, what routes stop there, and how to get to them. The downtown signs also have a map of the area and popular destinations.

     

  2. Christopher Said,

    Ohio State has a next bus arrival system that was recently installed, you can track buses online and there are LED signs are some stops. trip.osu.edu

     

  3. Pat Said,

    The Urbanophile Blog posted a very interesting article on transit see link below.

    http://theurbanophile.blogspot.com/2009/08/chicago-transit-from-good-to-great-part_30.html

    In particular, the section on the new bus shelters that San Francisco is rolling out. See edited section below.

    Here is the new San Francisco bus shelter:


    Its polycarbonate roof is made of 40% post-consumer recycled waste and contains photovoltaic cells that store power by day to illuminate it at night and also feed power back into the grid. The steel frame is 75% recycled material. These shelters even contain integrated WiFi hot spots. It is a totally custom, unique design for the city. 1,110 of these are scheduled to be installed in the city by 2013.

     

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