In a move that has backers of public transit scratching their heads, 10TV is reporting that downtown business owners' associations are calling for re-routing COTA bus service off High Street. The Columbus Downtown Development Corporation says that this would reduce congestion downtown and make the roads more efficient.
In some places, signs have appeared in windows of businesses telling bus riders to "Go Home."
The thought is that buses cause congestion because of the large numbers of big vehicles lining the side of the streets during rush hours, and that this causes people not to be able to get to the downtown businesses to patronize them.
However, this flies in the face of studies from all over the country showing that every bus rider takes a car off the road, making things more efficient and less congested. More efficiency on the roads means more ease in getting downtown.
The problem isn't the size of buses, it's the fact that too many people aren't using them more. Two cars take up about the same road space as one bus, but hold a maximum of 10 people compared to the 30 or more that can occupy a bus. And most of those cars are single occupant vehicles, meaning that there are two people taking up that space on our roads instead of the aforementioned 30.
At any rate, a study is being done to see how COTA can most efficiently serve our downtown and to see if different routes are needed, or different bus hubs than the ones we have now.