Orbiting Tempe

Orbit Bus Tempe

They have these cute little buses here in Tempe, Arizona.  They are called Orbit buses and each navigates a different route named after a planet.  They don’t just operate on main roads but follow side streets into all kinds of neighbourhoods.  You can flag them down anywhere.

dave chats with the bus driver

Dave chats with our Orbit bus driver about the free bus service Tempe provides

The other night when we were going to a basketball game at Arizona State University we took the Venus line and then transferred to the Mercury line. And here is the thing.  These buses are completely free of charge.  The city operates them to encourage people to take public transit rather than drive their own cars.  Dave chatted with one of the drivers who said the program has been very successful. Taxes were raised by a tiny percentage point to pay for the Orbit buses. 

Dave looks at the pamphlet that shows the different Orbit routes

Tempe is a university town and many students make use of the free bus service. In my home city of Winnipeg, they are thinking of cancelling a program that allows university students to buy bus passes at a reduced rate. A pretty backwards approach compared to what they are doing here in Tempe. When we lived in Hong Kong we used to have little neighbourhood buses like the Orbit buses. We called them minibuses. Dave and I used them all the time. 

What a great idea to create less traffic and protect the environment. 

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2 Comments

Filed under Arizona

2 responses to “Orbiting Tempe

  1. gabe

    The proposed transit cuts in Winnipeg are out of this world. We seem to discriminate against public transit. My daughter will be scrambling for alternatives to get to her job. On the plus side, it’s making her politically aware and engaged.

    Like

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