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VTA meets to discuss service cuts

 

The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority will hold a meeting at City Hall Wednesday, Aug. 12 to gather input on proposed service cuts, including the complete elimination of line 34 in Mountain View.

The VTA is holding meetings around the county this week, including one in Mountain View on Wednesday, Aug. 12 at 3 p.m. in the Council Chambers at City Hall, located at 500 Castro Street.

A complete list of meeting times and proposed schedule changes is available at www.vta.org/servicereductions.

The proposals include reducing frequency on 57 bus lines and eliminating four routes altogether: lines 34, 43, 76 and 101. Line 34 runs from the downtown train station in Mountain View to San Antonio Shopping center via Middlefield Road. Service cuts are also on the table for the county's three light rail lines.

The VTA's board of directors will vote in October on which service cuts, if any, to implement, VTA spokeswoman Jennie Loft said. Any changes in bus or light rail schedules would take effect on Jan. 11, 2010.

Declining sales tax revenue and state funding cuts have put the VTA in a fiscal crunch. The agency is currently facing a $36 million budget gap. Last week the agency's board voted to move up a planned fare increase that will now take effect Oct. 1 instead of January 2010.

Bay City News contributed to this report.

— Staff Reports

Comments

Like this comment
Posted by Mike Zelinski
a resident of North Whisman
on Aug 13, 2009 at 12:42 pm

VTA bus line 34 is proposed to be discontinued. At the VTA Proposed Cost Reduction public meeting I learned that this bus line is the only one servicing that area of Mountain View, where many senior citizens and immigrants live who rely on the bus as their only form of transportation. This line runs between Rengstorff, Middlefield, and Castro streets. The tentative decision to discontinue this bus line is based on ridership that is low relative to other bus lines. However, the lower ridership numbers are almost certainly due to the fact that line 34 is a much shorter route than other bus lines, so it draws from a proportionately smaller population.

A simple solution would be to re-route bus line 32, if only for two or three times during the day, to service this area. The VTA and the Mountain View City Council need to hear from residents on how best to implement the overall reduction plan. The current proposal of simply discontinuing line 34 seems like a huge public safety and ethical--if not legal--problem. Is it acceptable to Mountain View residents that several senior citizen centers in our community are going to lose their only mode of transportation?


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