Category Archives: Service Reports

Take ORF with HRT: Route 7 ORF Airport

Hampton Roads Transit Bus Route Seven at Norfolk International AirportI was on board Route 7 today and I must say, the word needs to get out.

Continue reading

Williamsburg Trip

I went to Williamsburg again yesterday and here’s my report:

Williamsburg Area Transit Authority launched a new pass program at the beginning of this year and for me, my trips here and there mean my best value is $2 for an All Day Pass.  Drivers just had a staff meeting the other day about making time points and, as I was on Orange Line (Train Station / Tam-0-Shanter / Best Buy / Water Country Back Entrance), we sat for several minutes at a couple of points to wait for it to be time to go.

Several of the operators I spoke with were curious about the GoPass365, which I use on my travels, and I explained that basically it’s HRT’s equivalent of showing a WATA operator your Thomas Nelson or William & Mary ID.

Now, my big big gripe: HRT Route 121 (NNTC / Patrick Henry Mall / Train Station:

There is but one single round trip in the morning, and one single round trip in the afternoon.  I boarded the 5 PM trip from WATA Station to head home, and get this

  • We left 7 minutes early (4:53 PM instead of the correct 5 PM)
  • We left before all WATA buses arrived

Of course I blasted an email off to HRT because I can easily see the run being more popular if it would just wait for the 5 PM WATA lineup and people knew they could depend on the 121 waiting for them.

Passenger count for Route 121:

  • 7 on at WATA Station
  • 2 off / 8 on at Patrick Henry Mall

Bear in mind that there could’ve been more if the bus simply waited for it’s schedule and allowed all WATA buses to arrive

Welcome Aboard, Mr Harrell

Mr. Harrell, welcome to HRT!! You will find that your city of Chesapeake can stand to benefit from a vastly expanded bus and rail system and I look forward to being able to ride the entire length of Battlefield in the near future. In the immediate future: I look forward to being able to get to/from Chesapeake in the evenings as well as Sundays, and being forced to leave the city by dinner time is not a good quality.
Continue reading

Route 7 ORF Airport is a go(?)

Apparently HRT is going to try the #7 Shitty Grove-Airport again

Major stops along the route:

  • Shitty Grove Parking Lot
  • Civic Plaza Station
  • Tidewater Dr & Noreview Ave
  • Five Points
  • ORF Airport

Route 7 Schedule, Daily 5 AM to 11:47 PM every hour.

Service begins Sunday, Feb 5th. Here’s hoping HRT doesn’t get ahead of themselves again.

Goodbye Suffolk

IMG_0038

Yesterday, I went for a ride with HRT Staff on the final day of HRT operations in Suffolk.  Passengers were mostly taking things in stride, and mostly it was a day of saying goodbyes to everyone.  Beginning Tuesday (because Monday is a Holiday), Virginia Regional Transit will be taking over Suffolk operations.  They will operate Routes 71 and 74 as they were, and is expected to report back with proposals around March or April.

I gave Suffolk Public Works an earful due to the loss of Paul D Camp Community College service, then the HRT staffer explained how the 72 also served a lot of residential that would be losing service as well.

I’ve used VRT’s Mountain Division service plenty of times before and I say: give them a chance to iron the kinks out.  Take it in stride, and I will be back in Suffolk to see how VRT is doing.

GoPass 365: Your Questions Answered

I picked up my TCC GoPass today. OFFICIALLY, they start working in January, however, you know I had to test it, so I purchased an All Day Pass when I got on the bus (to keep myself legal) and then inserted my GoPass into the farebox. It works and it works great!!

Now, let me answer your questions:

  • Q: Can I use it to ride the local bus?
    A: Yes
  • Q: Can I Ride the Tide?
    A: Yes, absolutely
  • Q: How about The MAX?
    A: Ye, even The MAX. No having to pay extra either. MAX rides are included with your GoPass!!
  • Q: Do I need to show proof of eligibility?
    A: Yes. In addition to your GoPass, you must present your ID. Students, this would be your College ID. Employer Passes require that you present your Employer Issued ID.

Now, if only more agencies and employers come on board. If you want to allow your employees or students access to all of HRT’s services, please visit the GoPass page (opens in a new tab). Let’s get the word out 🙂

[UPDATED] Use HRT to Take ORF (or not)

Update #2: 2:15 PM, Friday, December 16th:
Got an email from the City of Virginia Beach basically stating that Route 7 was news to them – they got the proposal on Wednesday and quickly identified a bus stop in Town Center. It was also news that the route was being put on hold.

Update: 10 AM, Friday December 16th
I smell rubbish. It looks like no Route 7 after all. Someone owes a BIG explanation!! I’m leaving this post up. Shame on EVERYONE who scrapped the launch. 20111216-095936.jpg

Original Post:
AltDaily has brought to my attention that starting this Sunday: HRT will be introducing Route 7, which will provide service once-hourly between Town Center, Newtown Station, and ORF Airport. Service will be daily 5 AM to 11 PM. I will provide updates as I get them.

ODU Tri-Cities by Bus

I start class at ODU’s Tri-Cities building for Spring Semester (it is a TCC class that is hosted on ODU property), so today, I took the bus there to gage the travel time

  • It is 2.5 hours away, including a ride on Route 800
  • My biggest complaint would be the lack of an inbound bus stop at Town Point Rd & Prices Fork Blvd on Route 47
  • The 47 should be rerouted down Prices Fork to University to College to serve the facility (sort of like taking the 14 to Grassfields Walmart)

Those of you who know me: I am not looking forward to riding the 25 from TCC 😦

Take a Ride on The Tide

The Tide is In

I’m BACK and I finally got to Ride the Tide for the first time.  I come from riding Sound Transit Link Light Rail, so I do have expectations of what service should be and what should not be done.  So far, it’s a start (but that was the plan all along: The Tide is the start of something bigger).

People who use it, are happily using it, and I’m seeing plenty of bus-train connections being made at Newtown Station (I personally did bus to train connections at these stations:  Military Hwy, Newtown, Ft Norfolk/EVMC, Monticello*, and MacArthur Square*).

The ride was rather smooth as promised, and does make the commute much faster.  What used to be a 90 minute bus ride from TCC Virginia Beach is now a 20 minute bus ride to Newtown Station + a 20 minute train ride into Downtown Norfolk (MacArthur Square Station).  I used to have to be on the 5:15 PM bus to get home on the last bus, but now I can stay until the 8:52 PM train from Downtown.  Yes, a vast improvement.  I am glad to be home 🙂

* Officially, buses don’t connect here, but they are close enough to Route 17.  MacArthur Square could use a bus stop on City Hall Ave for several routes that go right past.

Operator Professionalism: My Compliments

I was on the 20 heading towards the Beach, and arrived at Pembroke Mall at 8:21 PM, roughly on schedule so I could get that 36 home.

As we were coming around the Corporation Lane loop, someone in the back of the bus broke wind and it wasn’t long until the awful smell made its way to the front of the bus, causing the entire bus to be in uproar!

Throughout the entire incident, the operator stayed calm and professional.  My compliments to the operator.