Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0

About Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0

The Atlanta region continues to experience unprecedented growth, changes in travel priorities and preferences, and the emergence of expanded job locations.

In response, the Atlanta-region Transit Link Authority (ATL) has launched a regional study to evaluate commuter travel patterns, existing commuter bus service levels and identify potential service changes for the Xpress bus system to better match commuter demands. This study is a critical step to ensure commuters from across the region have a convenient, comfortable, reliable, and integrated transportation options.

This study called Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0, represents the ATL’s effort to:

  • – Better understand post-pandemic weekday travel habits
  • – Identify emerging and in-person job centers around the region
  • – Reimagine how regional commuter bus service can better serve riders while increasing ridership.

STEP 1: LEARN ABOUT THE SYSTEM RECOMMENDATIONS

STEP 2: SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS ABOUT THE PROPOSED SYSTEM RECOMMENDATIONS AND TAKE OUR BRIEF SURVEY TODAY

DRAFT REDEFINING THE RIDE – XPRESS 2.0 SYSTEM RECOMMENDATIONS

The draft recommendations propose a streamlined approach to aligning current demand and ensuring reliable commuting options to key destinations. With Xpress ridership at only 30% of pre-pandemic levels, adjustments are needed. Despite the significant drop in ridership, service levels, route structures, and the number of park-and-ride lots remain unchanged since the height of the pandemic. Operating 27 bus routes, 27 park-and-ride lots, and 55 bus stops, Xpress is currently providing far more service than is being utilized. The draft Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 recommendations adjust Xpress services to better match actual usage and improve overall efficiency.

Improving System Efficiency

Enhance efficiency and improve overall service

Expanding Job Access

Broaden the service area to attract new customers and retain existing riders

Increasing Ridership

Identify new travel markets and commute patterns to increase service availability

Phase I: Enhanced Efficiency

The first phase proposes streamlined commuter trips to key park-and-ride lots while providing efficient operations with updated bus stops and connections to MARTA’s rail stations. This initial phase includes a marked reduction and merging of underutilized routes and park-and-ride lots. The proposed system recommends adjusting several routes to end at various MARTA rail stations, encouraging passengers to transfer to existing rail stations for the remainder of their commute. Intended outcomes for Phase I, in addition to operational efficiencies, include improved trip travel time reliability inside the perimeter, expanded access to employment opportunities in the Metro Atlanta Area, and broader access to the region using MARTA’s bus and rail network.

enhanced efficiency
Enhanced Efficiency_Today & Proposed_Redefining the Ride - Xpress 2.0

Phase II: Expanded Opportunities

The second phase of the recommendations introduces “reverse commute” opportunities. A reverse commute involves traveling against the typical rush hour traffic flow from an urban area like Downtown Atlanta to suburbs or business parks for work. This approach makes efficient use of buses and provides more travel options and access to the region. It also ensures that direct rides to Downtown Atlanta and Perimeter Center are maintained. For Xpress service, incorporating reverse commutes means we can better utilize our transit capacity, offer additional connections, and expand our ridership by catering to commuters traveling from downtown areas to suburban job locations.

Expanded Opportunities Reverse Commute_Redefining the Ride - Xpress 2.0

Phase III: Increased Ridership

In addition to the reverse commute opportunities, new markets were explored to provide more east-west regional coverage to major in-person employment centers (IPECs) and transfer locations. Additional east-west system coverage will provide new connections to areas with identified IPECs, such as Fulton Industrial Boulevard, Town Center/Big Shanty, College Park/Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (HJAIA), Perimeter Center, Alpharetta, and Marietta.

Proposed Xpress System_Redefining the Ride - Xpress 2.0

We Want to Hear From You!

To help make Xpress 2.0 a success, we need to hear from you! Please take 5 minutes to complete our brief survey and share your thoughts on the proposed service recommendations for Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0. Your feedback will help us refine and improve our service to better meet your needs and enhance your overall experience. Thank you for your time and contribution!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0?

Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 is a regional study launched by The Atlanta-region Transit Link Authority (ATL) in 2023 to reimagine the Xpress Bus system. The study aims to evaluate commuter travel patterns and identify service changes to better match commuter demands.

Why is Xpress considering changes to the service?

Current Xpress ridership is 30% of pre-pandemic ridership. These proposed system recommendations explore opportunities to create a more efficient and effective service. Operating 27 bus routes, 27 park-and-ride lots, and 55 bus stops, Xpress is currently providing far more service than is being utilized. The Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 proposed recommendations reimagines the Xpress system to better match actual usage and improve overall efficiency.

What are the major changes in the Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 proposed system recommendations?

The proposed system recommendations outline a three-phased approach to improve Xpress service efficiency and expand rider options through reverse commutes and new markets.

– Phase I streamlines commuter trips, maximizes key park-and-ride lots, and updates bus stops and connections to MARTA rail stations to improve efficiency. This phase includes reducing and merging underutilized routes and park-and-ride lots and adjusting routes to end at various MARTA rail stations, enabling passengers to transfer to rail stations for the remainder of their commute.

– Phase II introduces reverse commutes, allowing trips from downtown Atlanta to seven suburban destinations and utilizing empty buses to serve major employment centers outside the perimeter. It also includes seven new market routes to enhance east-west regional coverage and connect unserved Metro Atlanta employment centers and transfer locations.

– Phase III explores adding new markets to enhance east-west regional coverage to major in-person employment centers (IPECs) and transfer locations. This additional coverage will provide new connections to areas with identified IPECs, such as Fulton Industrial Boulevard, Town Center/Big Shanty, College Park/HJAIA, Perimeter Center, Alpharetta, and Marietta.

What is a “reverse commute” and how does this impact the Xpress service?

A reverse commute involves traveling against the typical rush hour traffic flow from an urban area like Downtown Atlanta to suburbs or business parks for work. This approach makes efficient use of buses that would otherwise be empty, providing more travel options and a more integrated transit experience for riders. This includes transfer points that facilitate easier and quicker transfers between other operators. It also ensures that direct rides to Downtown Atlanta and Perimeter Center are maintained. For Xpress service, incorporating reverse commutes means we can better utilize our transit capacity, offer additional connections, and expand our ridership by catering to commuters traveling from downtown areas to suburban job locations.

How will the proposed changes impact current Xpress routes?

Some routes may be merged or adjusted to ensure more direct and frequent service to key destinations. Additionally, underutilized routes may be modified or discontinued to allocate resources more effectively. These changes seek to enhance the reliability and convenience of the Xpress service and provide better connections and travel options for our riders. For more information about recommendations for specific routes, visit https://xpressga.com/routes.

Will there be any changes to the park-and-ride lots?

Yes, changes are proposed to optimize the use of key park-and-ride lots. Underutilized locations may be taken offline or merged to better serve high-demand areas. These changes aim to improve overall service efficiency and provide better connections to major transit hubs and destinations. For more details on specific park-and-ride recommendations, visit https://xpressga.com/system-map.

Does the Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 proposed system recommendations increase costs for customers?

No. Currently, there is no plan to increase fares for Xpress customers if the system recommendations are implemented.

What are the goals of the Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 proposed system recommendations?

The key goals of the proposed system recommendations include improving regional Xpress service, identifying service solutions to address new travel patterns and commutes, and offering efficient and convenient routes to attract and serve new and existing customers.

How will the Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 proposed system recommendations impact other transit services like MARTA?

The proposed system recommendations are designed to complement and enhance other transit services like MARTA. They aim to improve connections and coordination between Xpress routes and MARTA rail and bus services, creating a more integrated transit experience. This includes more efficient transfer points for easier and quicker transfers, enhancing overall convenience for riders.

It appears that several stops have been recommended for elimination in the proposed system recommendations. How will this impact my commute?

While the system recommendations have streamlined bus stops, proposed changes also provide increased access to MARTA’s rail stations – connecting riders to even more destinations with a free transfer.

When will the Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 recommendation be finalized?

The proposed system recommendations are currently being shared with the public and Xpress customers. Feedback received from the public will help refine the draft recommendation that will be presented to the ATL board for consideration and possible adoption. Stay informed by subscribing to the Xpress newsletter and visiting Xpressga.com.

How do I provide feedback on the Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 proposed system recommendations?

Click here to take a brief survey and share your thoughts to help shape the future of our Xpress service.

How will my feedback on the Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 proposed system recommendations be used?

Your feedback is crucial in shaping the final Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 plan. We will review all input to understand the needs and preferences of our riders and stakeholders. This will help us refine and adjust the proposed changes to better serve our community, ensuring the final plan is inclusive, comprehensive and effective in enhancing our transit system.

What is the timeline for implementing the Redefining the Ride – Xpress 2.0 recommendations?

The timeline for implementing the recommendations is still being finalized. Once approved, there will be opportunities for public input on proposed changes to each route at least six weeks before any service changes go into effect. Specific details about any changes will be communicated early and frequently to ensure riders have enough time to review and provide feedback, allowing for a smooth transition to the new service improvements.

If this information is needed in another language, please contact the ATL at (404) 893-2100 or [email protected]

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