Fri, Apr 21
Bustang by Myron, Post 8
Post 8 – “What do you do if you need a car?”
Myron works for WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff as a Senior Supervising Planner. Myron commutes by Bustang from Fort Collins every day, and kindly agreed to write about his experiences for a series of blog posts. Read them in order starting with Post 1 – Hi, I am >BUZZ< and I ride a bus.
Luckily, being downtown means there are plenty of things within walking distance. My manager commented that he gets more exercise and outdoor time with a downtown office than he did at other locations where the typical trip begins and ends in a car.
One of the questions I get asked all the time is, “What do you do if you need a car?” Options baby, all about options. Car sharing, ride-sourcing, ride-sharing, other public transit, walking, and plan, plan, plan.
First, I try and schedule appointments or after work activities on one of the few days I HAVE to drive, trying to trip train my way into or out of downtown so I only have to pay to park in a lot once. That means scheduling meetings and appointments early or late in the day when I can. If I have a personal appointment and didn’t drive in, I have a couple of the best, smartest, and most good-looking coworkers a guy could ever ask for. I can borrow from them for the low cost of buying lunch and a little flattery. In a pinch, there is Uber or Lyft, which cost about the same as those low priced downtown lunches. Either way, it’s still better and cheaper than driving from home. Personally, I like the borrow-for-lunch plan because, if you remember, I’m a talker. And my extremely talented, did I say good looking, friends are great conversationalists.
For work related travel, my company has a couple of vehicles I can sign out to travel to meetings. They are available +95% of the time; it’s the meetings on short notice that cause problems. My bartering skills come into play for those too, when I try to persuade someone to move their meeting, let me call in (telephone commuting), or get the person who signed out the car to let me have it instead. Some of the time, there are others going to the same meeting and we take their car. I can usually find a solution that works, leaving me 2% of times I just end up driving in or using another mode.
Speaking of different modes, there is RTD. I’ve taken the 16, 16X, 8, 15L, RX, and West Line to work, from meetings, or after work to meet family and friends. I just go onto RTD’s website and use the trip planner, and double check that I have exact change. I’m single trip rider, meaning I am also an outsider. I see that the regulars have their routines just like the regulars on Bustang, reading the paper, napping, or chatting with their bus buddies. When I was taking the 16X to the Broncos’ game they chatted with me too, wondering about the price of tickets, making sure I knew when to get off, where to walk to get to the stadium, and telling me to take the 16 next time because it stops closer. The drivers have been helpful, explaining where to catch my returning bus and asking if I need a transfer.
Luckily, being downtown means there are plenty of things within walking distance. My manager commented that he gets more exercise and outdoor time with a downtown office than he did at other locations where the typical trip begins and ends in a car. Industry events, some consultants, restaurants, and shopping are nearby, making walking a great option.
I don’t have a guaranteed ride home, so you can be guaranteed I am not going to miss that last Bustang out. My options are very limited or expensive if that were to happen. And I get the feeling my wife wouldn’t be as courteous as the RTD drivers, though she may tell me where to get off.