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Tcmetro

Pace 2019 Budget

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Pace has yet to publish the 2019 budget on the webpage, but has posted the public hearing notice. Pace is planning to cut the following routes and reinvest the service elsewhere:

  • Route 209 Busse Highway (Saturday service discontinued only)
  • Route 304 North Riverside-LaGrange
  • Route 326 West Irving Park
  • Route 348 Harvey-Riverdale-Blue Island (Saturday service discontinued only)
  • Route 362 South Park Forest
  • Route 504 South Joliet (Saturday service discontinued only)
  • Route 532 Illinois Avenue
  • Route 540 Farnsworth Avenue (Saturday service discontinued only)
  • Route 546 Orange-Walnut (Saturday service discontinued only)
  • Route 590 Round Lake Area Call-N-Ride (On-Demand)
  • Route 661 Southwest Westmont
  • Route 681 Lincoln Park-Naperville Metra
  • Route 809 Richmond-Fox Lake Metra Station
  • Route 824 East Bolingbrook-Lisle

http://pacebus.com/sub/news_events/public_hearings_upcoming.asp

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12 hours ago, Tcmetro said:

Pace has yet to publish the 2019 budget on the webpage,

It doesn't get published until the Board authorizes its release at this afternoon's meeting. See the agenda.

Aside from Saturdays and the feeders, most of these were destined to fail,such as 304 when it was cut back from 54th to North Riverside because 21 overran that segment, 326 (always messing with it), and 532 (made into a feeder because ridership was dropping in Aurora).

Also, I wonder what the service standard is to drop an On Demand.

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It's sad to see 304 go to be honest.  But I'm not surprised considering how it only runs every hour and it went down the gutter,  like busjack said, when service to 54th was discontinued.  

 

It probably would've gotten a bit more ridership out of those wanting to go to the zoo on Saturdays at least.  It used to be nice to have a direct route from Cicero and Berwyn to Brookfield Zoo.  I do remember it having more passengers back then when I would go to Brookfield.

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6 hours ago, chicagocubs6323 said:

It probably would've gotten a bit more ridership out of those wanting to go to the zoo on Saturdays at least.  It used to be nice to have a direct route from Cicero and Berwyn to Brookfield Zoo.  I do remember it having more passengers back then when I would go to Brookfield.

The question on that one is that since Cook County is subsidizing the Brookfield Zoo Expresses (including 770 and 771), whether that need still exists.

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5 hours ago, andrethebusman said:

Slowly Aurora and Joliet fade way. 

However, this isn't necessarily indicative of that. Aurora was basically toast before the last restructuring; 532 as a feeder was a sop thrown to commenters at the public hearing. 504 Saturday has been off and on for a long time. If I were to draw any conclusion, Saturday is not what it once was, but it fell apart on the North Shore about 10 years ago.

Some of the Du Page feeders are also biting it, but I suppose the Bolingbrook riders are using I-55 instead of BNSF. 

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10 hours ago, Busjack said:

However, this isn't necessarily indicative of that. Aurora was basically toast before the last restructuring; 532 as a feeder was a sop thrown to commenters at the public hearing. 504 Saturday has been off and on for a long time. If I were to draw any conclusion, Saturday is not what it once was, but it fell apart on the North Shore about 10 years ago.

Some of the Du Page feeders are also biting it, but I suppose the Bolingbrook riders are using I-55 instead of BNSF. 

Effectively the methodology is to spread the pain around. Depending if they scored the passenger loads per subregion, these were easily the low-hanging fruit. 

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19 minutes ago, MetroShadow said:

Effectively the methodology is to spread the pain around. Depending if they scored the passenger loads per subregion, these were easily the low-hanging fruit. 

In that the budget hasn't been posted yet, Pace's only methodology (short of a restructuring) is not making half the recovery ratio, which these days is about 15%.

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It's now posted.

Capital budget (which is usually meaningless) says 35 30 foot buses. Seems like some 40 ft buses need to be replaced first. Only 18 40 foot buses in 2022 which makes no sense, but the 2018 budget had a similar entry of 31 30 foot buses, yet 86 40 ft buses magically appeared.

 

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Interestingly, most of these routes are ran by 30 footers.  Wonder if we start seeing movement amongst them or potentially retire.  

661 is an interesting one because it runs thru a major apartment complex in the area going to the Westmont Metra.  Wonder why ridership isn't good over there.

824 probably makes sense, that route runs right off of Boughton Road, where the 855 bus stops are.  One day, I saw a good 10 people get off just past the car wash on Boughton Road in the evening where awaiting rides were.  If ridership is down, that's a clear reason why.  Surprised 825 isn't on this list.  

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7 minutes ago, rotjohns said:

661 is an interesting one because it runs thru a major apartment complex in the area going to the Westmont Metra.  Wonder why ridership isn't good over there.

661 seems only supplementary of 662 and 665.

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4 hours ago, Busjack said:

In that the budget hasn't been posted yet, Pace's only methodology (short of a restructuring) is not making half the recovery ratio, which these days is about 15%.

Normally (and this may be the result after I fixed their standards) there would be other KPIs on top of the 15%. That said, these were already low performers, and a pruning may be more preferable than a slash (like was threatened & done in 2010)

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2 hours ago, Busjack said:

661 seems only supplementary of 662 and 665.

And the 665 runs right past the complexes on Cass Ave, but doesn't stop because it's going express to Metra.  Depending on ridership, they might need to consider having it stop at Cass/67th to pick up those passengers, then run express to Metra.  662 has a bus stop at Cass/63rd already so they should be able to accomodate also.

Also, with the closeness of these routes to Metra (less than 2 miles), maybe more people are driving to the stations now.  And with the popularity of the I-55 routes, folks could be heading to the Burr Ridge P&R.  That lot was packed about 2 weeks ago when I passed by there around 8am.  Hypothetical, but possible.

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19 minutes ago, rotjohns said:

And the 665 runs right past the complexes on Cass Ave, but doesn't stop because it's going express to Metra.  Depending on ridership, they might need to consider having it stop at Cass/67th to pick up those passengers, then run express to Metra.  662 has a bus stop at Cass/63rd already so they should be able to accomodate also.

Also, with the closeness of these routes to Metra (less than 2 miles), maybe more people are driving to the stations now.  And with the popularity of the I-55 routes, folks could be heading to the Burr Ridge P&R.  That lot was packed about 2 weeks ago when I passed by there around 8am.  Hypothetical, but possible.

665: Probably ends up  like some of the Naperville ones or 464 getting canned and 821 picking up some of its stops.

2. On the "to Metra" point, probably dovetails with the Metra point that jobs in the CBD are up but ridership is down, probably due to telecommuting.  

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4 hours ago, Busjack said:

It's now posted.

Capital budget (which is usually meaningless) says 35 30 foot buses. Seems like some 40 ft buses need to be replaced first. Only 18 40 foot buses in 2022 which makes no sense, but the 2018 budget had a similar entry of 31 30 foot buses, yet 86 40 ft buses magically appeared.

 

"Five year plans" are basically wish lists. Little relation to what really happens year to year. Wish list might be for "35 30-foot buses" but all that really means is that they figure to have sufficient money available to buy 35 30-foot buses at current prices. That money amount might go down, might go up, prices change, what is really needed change. One should place very, very little credence in these "long range plans". 

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4 hours ago, Busjack said:

It's now posted.

Capital budget (which is usually meaningless) says 35 30 foot buses. Seems like some 40 ft buses need to be replaced first. Only 18 40 foot buses in 2022 which makes no sense, but the 2018 budget had a similar entry of 31 30 foot buses, yet 86 40 ft buses magically appeared.

 

What is "budgeted for 2018" and what was spent in 2018 are two different things. Some of what was spent in 2018 could conceivably been budgeted for 2017, or even earlier, or listed under another "planned expenditure" and got "reprogrammed". 

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8 hours ago, andrethebusman said:

What is "budgeted for 2018" and what was spent in 2018 are two different things. Some of what was spent in 2018 could conceivably been budgeted for 2017, or even earlier, or listed under another "planned expenditure" and got "reprogrammed". 

The last time you brought this up, I challenged you to show where the exercise of options was in the board minutes, and you didn't. Similarly, Pace has  posted budgets back to 2004, so if you can find where the 40 ft buses were budgeted, go to it.

Besides descrepancies in 2018,  my comment was generally based on the 2019 capital budget and 5 year capital plan.  Among the other discrepancies I noted is that nothing is in the 1 or 5 year plan is budgeted for either construction or buses for the Dempster Pulse, and while I'm sure you have some argument where the 86 2018 40 foot buses are on the average age list, it is undoubted that the accounting department lost 3 CNGs.

Finally, there would be no need to include 78 40 foot buses in the current procurement if there is no intent to purchase any until 2022. Is Pace keeping that number of NABIs until the out years, or replacing them with 30 foot buses? Either seems preposterous, but maybe your inside contacts in Arlington Heights can tell you differently.

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4 hours ago, Adam Kerman said:

What's a suggestion to be made on revising 326 instead of discontinuing it? It's been a bus route with few passengers on it since CTA operated a version of it.

My idea would be to reroute the303 or 332 to run on Irving Park between 25th Ave (or the 332 from Manheim) and River  Rd.  There is really no market or ridership west of  River Rd going east of River Rd and vice versa. The 326 isn't needed in that regard and the 303 or 332 can handle Schiller Park and Rosemont.

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Let me try to explain this in a different way: Pace allocates x number dollars to account number such in year such. This is not an order. It is allocating an amount of money that is expected to pay for roughly a certain number of buses. However prices change, and what that amount buys changes. The budget book is an outline. If one went thru every single board authorization item by item, you would be able to find how much each batch cost by chasing down every change order and amendment, but you would be very hard pressed to correlate that with five-year plan amounts. Just because the 2017 budget allocates x amount does not mean it all gets actually spent in 2017.

For instance, what "plan year" do CTA 8325-8349 belong to?

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10 hours ago, andrethebusman said:

Let me try to explain this in a different way: Pace allocates x number dollars to account number such in year such. This is not an order. It is allocating an amount of money that is expected to pay for roughly a certain number of buses. However prices change, and what that amount buys changes. The budget book is an outline.

I don 't need your explanation. If the money was in the budget in a particular year, can you tell me what year's budget that is? Or is Pace maintaining a capital slush fund?

Somehow, a new carpet for North Shore Division is worth putting into a capital budget, but a correct accounting of money available for bus purchases isn't.

10 hours ago, andrethebusman said:

For instance, what "plan year" do CTA 8325-8349 belong to?

CTA had a press release "Mayor Emanuel" announced the acquisition of the 25 Nova Buses  and said "The first of the 25 buses is expected to arrive in Chicago in late 2018." It was not a secret procurement.

And yes, I can answer that question. The 2018 CTA Budget has under 2018 in its 5 year capital program (page 28) "Replace buses $28,254."  On page 60 it says "In 2018 the CTA will procure the remaining 25 buses to complete the recent Nova bus order totaling 450 buses." That's good enough for me.

You find me something similar in the Pace budgets.

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18 hours ago, artthouwill said:

My idea would be to reroute the303 or 332 to run on Irving Park between 25th Ave (or the 332 from Manheim) and River  Rd.  There is really no market or ridership west of  River Rd going east of River Rd and vice versa. The 326 isn't needed in that regard and the 303 or 332 can handle Schiller Park and Rosemont.

That sort of depends on what function 326 purportedly has. The last time it was "saved," it was routed to some office complex on Balmoral Road, but if the purpose is to serve Rosemont, I'm sure that Brad Stevens, although no longer on the board, has enough influence with it to get something. On the other hand, if the purpose was to get those in Schiller Park to CTA 80, this doesn't accomplish it.

But as I said to the person who posed the question about 14 years ago, I do not have, nor a way to challenge, Pace's boarding statistics.

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21 hours ago, artthouwill said:

My idea would be to reroute the303 or 332 to run on Irving Park between 25th Ave (or the 332 from Manheim) and River  Rd.  There is really no market or ridership west of  River Rd going east of River Rd and vice versa. The 326 isn't needed in that regard and the 303 or 332 can handle Schiller Park and Rosemont.

Now that I think about, this problem is  already solved.  The 303 already runs on Irving Park between 25th Ave and River Rd.  The 332 runs on Lawrence  between  Manheim and  River Rd.  Thus the 326 service area in Schiller Park and Rosemont is still covered in regards to service to Rosemont Blue Line  station.

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4 hours ago, Busjack said:

I don 't need your explanation. If the money was in the budget in a particular year, can you tell me what year's budget that is? Or is Pace maintaining a capital slush fund?

Somehow, a new carpet for North Shore Division is worth putting into a capital budget, but a correct accounting of money available for bus purchases isn't.

CTA had a press release "Mayor Emanuel" announced the acquisition of the 25 Nova Buses  and said "The first of the 25 buses is expected to arrive in Chicago in late 2018." It was not a secret procurement.

And yes, I can answer that question. The 2018 CTA Budget has under 2018 in its 5 year capital program (page 28) "Replace buses $28,254."  On page 60 it says "In 2018 the CTA will procure the remaining 25 buses to complete the recent Nova bus order totaling 450 buses." That's good enough for me.

You find me something similar in the Pace budgets.

You do realise 28 grand does not get you 25 buses? Maybe enough seats for one bus? These 25 are from a previous year's allocation of funds that haven't been spent yet. 

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5 hours ago, andrethebusman said:

You do realise 28 grand does not get you 25 buses? Maybe enough seats for one bus? These 25 are from a previous year's allocation of funds that haven't been spent yet. 

Numbers are in thousands. You didn't realize that? It says that at the top of the table. If you don't believe me or are unable to click on transitchicago.com, here's a screenshot:

budget.thumb.png.8d6e5e831d9b56b07085faff8d817595.png

Since each Nova Bus is about $550,000, $28 million undoubtedly covers $13,750,000 for the 25 buses, plus some share of the elctrics.

Also, it really doesn't matter if CTA had the money earning 0.1% interest on hand.The purpose of the budget is to say that it anticipates having that much money to purchase that many buses in 2018. The 2018 CTA budget meets that requirement. The Pace budgets have not for the past couple of years, and you have not shown to the contrary. My last clause, and not argument, is the core of the issue.

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