July 03, 2006

Hey Ottawa - Your Buses Suck!!

Buses in general, suck. Traffic makes them totally and utterly unreliable to coming on time. Then they may just drive past your stop, either when your getting on or off - which also adds to their unreliability. A bus that makes two stops is bound to make better time than one that makes eight. Okay, public transport is better for the environment, but if its useless noones going to use it unless they absolutely have to.

My sister and I caught a bus into downtown Ottawa yesterday. Off to a bad start we had a 48 minute wait on a bus line that is scheduled to come past every 20 minutes. I pulled over the only other bus to come past at about 35 minutes. The driver just said, "I'm sure its coming, check the schedule on the post"; which were possible the only sentences he was legally allowed to say, because he didn't say anything else. I tried to explain we already had a schedule that said we should've seen at least one, likely two buses already but he wouldn't budge from those two sentences. Then I check the post, it doesn't even have a freakin' schedule. It had a map, and information on what days of the week the bus came, and a complex system of a number to call to get a schedule - but I'm a tourist I don't have a phone. Wankers.

Finally a bus did come, which i thought meant I could have a relaxing rest sitting on a bus before I had to walk around downtown - except, the buses were really poorly designed for comfort. There was no legroom - every guy I saw and a few of the women, were totally unable to sit straight on the chairs because it would require their knees to be pushed into the metal (unflexible non cushioning break-your-leg in a crash material) backs of the seat in front of them. The metal, and lack of decent cushioning also contributed to the general discomfort.

To add insult to injury - when we got to the info-center downtown, I asked the woman there about the bus system and how reliable it was. She promptly said that Ottawa has one of the best bus-based transit systems in Canada. Very reassuring, that.

There was also the bus not stopping at our "all bus lines" stop on the return - and the driver again insisting that stuff was on the sign that simply wasn't there. And I noticed that the back door wouldn't open about 50% of the time, which meant the passenger had to consider whether or not it is rude to shout at a driver to get there attention to a job they should already be doing.

Rocky better have a subway set up when I come back. (Sh-yeh right)


At Wed. Jul. 05, 12:06:00 am AEST, Anonymous Anonymous said...


At Tue. Jul. 11, 05:43:00 am AEST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ottawa bus system can be good...i can vouch for that!


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