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Will rising gas prices give people an incentive to use public transportation?

Asked at Hastings, 1900 W. 23rd St. on March 5, 2005

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Photo of Monica Istas

“Somehow I kind of doubt it. Most people pay whatever gas costs so they don’t have to bother with riding the bus.”

Photo of Jim Coop

“No, I don’t think it will affect people. I live out in the country and I’m pretty sure I’m not going to think twice.”

Photo of Fedro Dillon

“I doubt it very seriously. People are generally lazy these days. They don’t even want to walk from their house to the bus stop.”

Photo of John Conard

“No, I don’t think so. It would probably have to get up to about $3 a gallon before people would start using it.”


muteboy13 13 years ago

I payed good money for my SUV and have no problem kickin' over some more $ to keep it from being thirsty. I see little difference in the smog emitted from my vehicle and the acid saturated stink of people who refuse to shower and that are in dire need of attention. Peace.

Hong_Kong_Phooey 13 years ago

What I find funny is that people are more than willing to pay $4 for a drink at a bar which, if you took out all the ice they put in the glass, would only be about half full, but they bitch if a friggin' GALLON of gasoline goes above $1.85... nice priorities...

lunacydetector 13 years ago

only a very 'out of touch with reality' type person would think rising gas prices will get people to take the bus. only in a fantasyland.

unfortunately, the birkenstock wearing, long haired, salvation army clothed, apartment dwelling, bicycle riding kooks who control this town will hope and would pray (if they believed in a god), that higher gas prices will force people into public transportation - but society as a whole enjoys the freedom of driving their own cars, trucks, or SUV's, as opposed to putting their life on hold in order to wait and ride for the sake of taking public transportation.

in other words, anyone will spend a dollar's worth of gas and drive their own car to get across town instead of 50 cents to ride a smelly environmentally unfriendly time wasting bus.

Richard Heckler 13 years ago

Some people will bite the bullet and ride the bus more. Children love riding the bus.

When the reason for rising prices is short can that be? Is it manipulation of the market? We will likely see another spike about summer vacation time. Yet people in america fail to challenge the oil giants and the government for what reason I'll never understand.

Choosing other means of transportation for a longer period of time will get the attention of the over paid CEO's. Feet/legs, bus, car pooling, Vespa's, bicycles, electric scooters obviously there are many choices. The Toyota Prius is comfy and very quiet at 70mpg it would be a wise choice. People might consider parking their gas hogs and buy a Prius for everyday short distance driving.

Also the city should consider buses that burn fuel more efficient even it it meant downsizing. At the same time if more folks left their cars at home using the bus would do much for cleaner air and huge profits for the oil giants.

kansas 13 years ago

No, I really don't think so. People love their cars! And they love the freedom associated with cars! As a matter of fact, just before I sat down in front of my computer just now, I was out on my front lawn doing some light yard work, and some guy in a nice, bright red, fairly new Corvette zipped right past me. Now do you think that guy cares about the price of gas?? You think he would ever be caught dead sitting on a public transit bus?? I don't!

But, whatever! To each his own, I guess!

snoozey 13 years ago

Are people really allowed to use the T bus? How come its always empty? Why am I paying for it ? Who is making money from it ?

jonas 13 years ago

The T-lift itself is used for disabled riders, and provides door to door service for people who qualify for it. It's funded by the city, and reimbursed, though only partially, through it's ridership. The transit service itself can be used by anybody, but the reason that it's ridership is less than full is because the only way people will use public transportation is if the inconvenience of doing so is less than the inconvenience of driving. The paltry traffic this town has is not enough to convince anyone to use public transportation, unless they don't own a car or can't afford to pay for that much gas.

kansas: The freedom of cars is only part of it. The other is the percieved loss of status that would come from having to ride the bus. After all, that's what poor people do.

WorldCitizen 13 years ago

I am a regular T-rider, not "poor," but careful with my budget. Even when gas prices were lower than they are now, it cost less to ride the bus than to use my car--taking into account the total cost of owning and operating a car. I am grateful for the T both because of financial reasons and the freedom from negotiating traffic and searching for parking places. My experience is that of very clean, pleasant buses and courteous, knowledgeable drivers. Thank you.

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