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Showing posts from January, 2019

University of North Florida Shuttle Buses

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At the beginning of this academic year in August 2018, UNF changed providers for their shuttle service, the Osprey Connector. Previously, the shuttles were operated by Academy Coach and used a fleet of 2002 New Flyer D35LF and 2003 New Flyer D30LFs. But, they either did not opt in for another contract or a deal could not be made and UNF changed providers - they chose Echo Tours & Transportation (dba Echo Transportation). Since Echo Transportation did not operate in Jacksonville prior to taking this contract, they had to purchase new buses for the service. Many of the drivers were given the opportunity to change companies and continue running the Osprey Connector and keep their seniority. Drivers who did not want to leave Academy stayed, and some new drivers were hired too.
Below I outline the types of buses used, both before and after the switch from Academy to Echo Transportation, as well as an issue with what buses are assigned to what routes here on campus. The latter part I tr…

January/February LYNX & Votran Service Changes

In the coming weeks, both LYNX and Votran will be having their next round of service changes. The LYNX changes are effective Sunday, January 27 and Votran's are in February (per Votran's usual mantra, they have not announced a date for these changes, more on that in that section of the post).

LYNX Let's start with the LYNX changes first. The changes include minor scheduling changes, routing changes, and a new route. Note, LYNX calls their routes "Links", so I will too.

New Service:
Link 709 - A one-way circulator around the Downtown Kissimmee area, connecting to SunRail, Amtrak, and other local routes at the Kissimmee Intermodal Station.Route Adjustments: Links 21 & 37 - The bus stop at the Valencia College West Campus will be moved from Valencia College Rd to near the Nursing & Fitness Center.NeighborLink 632 - The zone will be extended north to serve the Tupperware Headquarters campus.Schedule Adjustments: Link 8 - the 4:51am Weekday Inbound trip will now s…

Bus Drivers Are People Too

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So the other day, I was on my University's shuttle bus, the Osprey Connector and overheard a conversation that got me thinking about this topic. The conversation was between two people already on the bus talking about how they like the new buses better - at the start of this academic year, UNF changed operators for the shuttle service, meaning we got new buses. But their conversation wasn't about the bus being better than the old ones, rather the drivers, in a way.

The part of the conversation I overheard was:
"I really like these buses better, they come a lot quicker than the old ones."  Well, there's a few things worth noting on that conversation, first was that they were comparing a Summer schedule to the Fall/Spring schedule. During the Summer semester, the buses run every 10-15 minutes while in the Fall/Spring semesters they run about every 5. So right there, the conversation they're having is already wrong. But going with it, many of the drivers from the …