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Old 06-19-2008, 10:13 AM   #5
Low Saturn
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 15,299

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Default Re: Taking the bus to work.

Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
Guesstimating from the drive time, your commute is, what, 12 miles? You could probably do it in an hour and change by bicycle.

54 minutes walk -- you're THREE MILES from the nearest public transportation? Eek! And that fare is obviously a one-off fare. Regular public transportation users can generally get either bulk or monthly passes for a fraction of the single-ride fare. And you probably park for free. In most cities, that's a BIG part of the cost comparison. I pay $60 a YEAR for private, locked parking, about 10 steps from the door of my building. It's for my bike. Parking a car anywhere near there would cost $100-ish a MONTH, and would mean a 1-3 block walk.

Everybody's circumstances are different. Yours is either an extreme case, or an example of why not everybody thinks CA is "the" place to live. My seat-of-the-pants sense is that for most people, either there simply is no public transportation option for their workplace (I used to drive 15 miles to a factory outside a small village "bedroom community" of Madison, for example), or their public transpo option takes 1.5 to 2 times as long as driving. The mistake people often make is that they think they're "saving time" driving, say, 1/2 hour rather than riding a train or bus for an hour. They forget that on the train or bus, they can be doing something else, that they'd have to set aside time for if they drive. (Oh, wait, no, nowadays people are reading, getting their Email, knitting, etc. WHILE driving; I forgot that's how we do things anymore....).
In my case, there is actually a bus stop within a five minute walk from my house. Its just no buses run on that route early in the morning. I work 7:00 to 3:30 and in order to get to work on time, I have to follow that crazy other route.


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