May 2, 2012

Bus Stops in the Short North versus Downtown

Per usual, there is quite the discussion going on at Columbus Underground (which I always enjoy). This time it's about COTA and parking downtown. I already looked into something similar when a Dispatch Editorial came out disparaging the amount that COTA was willing to compromise.

One thing I was curious about was the amount of bus stops made in the Short North versus Downtown. Just north of Goodale on High Street, there is on-street parking with no peak hour restrictions. Downtown high St. does not currently have on-street parking, but it appears that there will be some soon with parking restrictions between 7:00 AM - 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM.

I decided to look at the following stops: High and State (East and West sides), High and Russell (East Side), and High and Buttles (East side). The first two are downtown and the latter are in the Short North. During a regular weekday, the High and State bus stops serve a total of 23 different buses (14 local). High and Russell serves 4 buses (routes #2, 5, 7, 8) while High and Buttles serves 3 buses (routes #2, 5, 8). Since most of the Short North only has 3 bus routes, I chose two stops on the east side of the street.

Here's an attempt to show you the location of the stops:

There are 4 squiggle dots in blue, red, green, and purple. Using the Google Transit data which COTA provides, here is how each stop stacks up on an hourly basis between 5:00 AM and 12:00 AM:

Click on the chart to enlarge
For downtown, the peak amount of stops are 56 in an hour. The average during the midday hours is 34 stops in an hour. That's a 64% increase from average to peak. Also, due to the express buses, the peaks of the East versus West side flip during morning versus evening. I think that's kind of cool to see in graphic form.

For the Short North, the peak amount of stops are 18 in an hour. the average during the midday hours is 15 stops in an hour. That's a 20% increase from average to peak.

These areas are not similar when we talk public transit which makes a world of difference when discussing parking. Sure, the Short North is vibrant and I'm sure the on-street parking has a small part to do with it, but it also never has 56 buses going through it in an hour. It'll be interesting enough to see how smoothly things go when parking is allowed on High Street downtown with buses an hour, but I think it'll be a good experiment.

Cool put a lime in a coconut link of the day:


  1. Good analysis. Also, your graph says "High and Street" instead of "High and State."

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