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METRO Considers Moving Transit Center From Bellaire to Gulfton

http://realtynewsreport.com/2019/05/14/metro-considers-moving-transit-center-from-bellaire-to-gulfton/

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BELLAIRE, Texas – (By Michelle Leigh Smith for Realty News Report) –  Bellaire area business owners were encouraged by news from former Bellaire Mayor and METRO board member Cindy Siegel that finally, there are plans to relocate the Bellaire Transit Center where riders transfer to METRO buses.

The 1.2-acre METRO center is located in the middle of Bellaire Boulevard at South Rice Avenue, about a half-mile west of Loop 610.

METRO is considering a plan to relocate the transit center to the Gulfton area to land that METRO will acquire near Gulfton Street and Chimney Rock Road.

METRO’s transit center in Bellaire Boulevard opened in 1987 amid a wide, oak-lined esplanade in the center of the east-west boulevard.

 “I fought many years to see this transit station moved west of the city,” says Siegel. “Moving it further west will not only help Bellaire but it is also better for the METRO customer by putting the station closer to the Gulfton community that frequently buses.”

She and the METRO board’s Sanjay Ramabhadran, P.E. recently revealed plans for the METRONext Moving Forward at the Bellaire Business Association breakfast. Ramabharan says METRO will have to acquire land for the new location, which they have named “the Gulfton Transit Center.”

 “We know the Bellaire community wants to see it moved because it causes a lot of transit issues,” says Siegel. “From METRO’s standpoint, it makes sense to move it because it serves the transit-oriented population near Gulfton.”

 

 

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The language used by Siegel strikes me as odd... sure, Gulfton residents have a higher propensity to use METRO, but is there no push to get more Bellaire residents to use transit too? What were the "transit issues" at the Bellaire @ S. Rice location? It always struck me as a sleepy, run-of-the-mill TC when I lived nearby.

 

It almost sounds like Bellaire is happy to have less transit access.

Edited by lithiumaneurysm
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They might as well say "transit is for the poors, and we don't want them here"

 

It's this sort of attitude (and, to be fair, METRO's accommodation of it) that leads to a consistently substandard system.

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34 minutes ago, ADCS said:

They might as well say "transit is for the poors, and we don't want them here"

 

It's this sort of attitude (and, to be fair, METRO's accommodation of it) that leads to a consistently substandard system.

 

I suppose we could put it in the middle of River Oaks Country Club. See how that goes.

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I actually don't think this is a bad thing.

 

Moving the transportation center to Gulfton might actually speed up the BRT expansion to Hilcroft.

 

Hilcroft to Gulfton TC to the new Bellaire BRT building. That would be a great way to serve a lot more folks with the new BRT line.

 

Looking at the map, it would actually be nice if they could throw BRT only lanes in the powerline ROW. My guess is that isn't going to fly.

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  • 2 months later...

I'm not really understanding the point of moving this transit center.  If it's moving to Gulfton at Chimney Rock, the only buses there are 9 and 49, which combined together only see about 5000 riders a day, and neither is a high-frequency route.  The current location serves two of the most popular high-frequency routes (2/402 and 65, each of which see 6000-8000 riders a day), plus the aforementioned 49, plus the high-frequency (but admittedly low-ridership) 33.

 

The whole point of a transit center is a nicer place for people to wait for connections, plus a place for bus drivers to use the restroom and possibly do a timing stop on the rare occasion that they are ahead of schedule.  Remember, this is just a fancy bus stop, not a park-and-ride.  But the proposed location would have a much, much smaller need for that than the current location.  Unless Metro is revamping their bus network again (which seems unlikely, though I do realize the 33 route may change once the Uptown BRT is in place), the new location of the transit center seems pointless.

 

Regardless of whether the Bellaire transit center exists, those bus routes will still be there so the same people will still be hanging around waiting to transfer buses, so if Bellaire residents have something against bus riders, moving the transit center won't change that.  If they just hate the existence of the building, it seems like it would make more sense to just tear it down without replacement than to build a semi-pointless transit center at a location with few bus riders.  Or is there something I am missing here?

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  • The title was changed to METRO Transit Center- Bellaire

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