Action Alert: Get the Big Blue Bus on Google Transit

Photo: LA Wad/Flickr
Photo: ##http://www.flickr.com/photos/hercwad/2414972899/##LA Wad/Flickr##

(Remember I told you we’d be adding new features to the blog?  If someone sends me an action alert that can be filled out online, we’ll repost it here. – DN)

From the L.A. Subway Blog comes a plea for the Santa Monica Big Blue Bus on Google Transit.  As a Westsider who lives next to a Big Blue Bus Stop, it would certainly make my life easier, but Subway Blog writer Juan Matute takes a less personal approach:

Big Blue Bus has raised fares and changed schedules, but they’re still not on Google Transit. They’ve consistently promised to go on Google Transit but this promise has been consistently delayed. Pressure Big Blue Bus to join Google Transit by signing the petition below and getting your friends to do the same:

http://www.petitiononline.com/smgt/petition.html

  • Ditto for Culver City Bus. The last I heard a few months ago was the data was in Beta.

  • So, where’s the petition to get Big Blue to join TAP?

  • Dan at Big Blue

    Regarding your concerns about BBB not being on Google Transit yet, we had expected to go live a few months ago but encountered some software issues. We had to go to the people who developed the software to have this issue correct. We now think the issue has been resolved, and the data is currently with Google Transit for their review.

    I thought you might also like to know Big Blue Bus is working to implement several new technology programs that will put transit information at riders fingers tips, and not just scheduled times, but real time info. We are working on a bus stop redevelopment program that will include real time signs at over 94 of our busiest bus stops in Santa Monica, a new automated voice automated system that will give cell phone users real time bus arrival info 24/7, a new website with trip planning function and real time information, a phone version of the website where web-enabled phones can get real time info, and aps for the i-phone and other devices. We’ll be sure to let you know when these become available.

  • Matt

    Good to know that BBB is getting the latest tech. It would be nice if they joined TAP as well. TAP is mostly useless now, but once the MTA enables the Cash purse option on it (which is hopefully shortly), it would be great to have other agencies like BBB on it as well.

  • BBB is the only one of three buses I use regularly which doesn’t take TAP. It’s the reason I am more likely to take the 704 Bus rather than BBB’s 1, since frequently I don’t have exact change for the fare box.

    Matt,

    Culver City Bus and others which are not Metro can fill up a Cash Purse for you that will work on Metro. The caveat to using it on Metro is, it’s one tap one fare. it does not turn into a day pass after 4 taps though you can use the funds on the TAP card to prebuy a day pass at a Metro fare machine or if you have an incredibly smart bus driver. Also it helps to have a smart driver to debit zone fares from the purse, thought I haven’t found a driver who can yet charge my tap card for the inter agency transfer.

  • Thanks to Dan @ BBB for the update. And please reconsider your participation in TAP once the cash purse function is activated on Metro’s service.

  • Erik G.

    I’d sure like SMBBB to honor the EZ day-pass that one gets from a Metrolink ticket purchase. SMBBB 10 terminates at Union Station, but SMBBB offers no full- or partial-reduction for Metrolink passengers.

  • Joseph E

    Wait, you can fill up the TAP in Culver City, and use it on Metro? I had no idea. I thought you could only use the “cash purse” on Culver buses! I don’t understand why Metro doesn’t make this available at all rail stations; shouldn’t it be a simple software upgrade?

    Hmmm… what excuse can I think of for a trip up to Culver City? I hate carrying cash for bus fares.

  • Dan at Big Blue

    The reason Big Blue Bus and several other municiple operators are not on the TAP program is because there is a problem with the system that does not allow BBB to get paid for the ride if a TAP card is used. We will join TAP if this issue is resolved and in the meantime suggest you use a 13 Ride Pass which gives you 13 rides for the price of 12 or a 30 Day Pass when riding BBB so you don’t have to worry about having change.

  • For people who use both Metro and the Big Blue Bus and the Culver City Bus systems, I think the Regional EZ Pass is a great deal.

    Too bad LADOT and DASH are no longer part of it.

  • Marcotico

    Dan at BBB. Why can’t we all just get along!?!? ;>

  • GOOD NEWS: Per a tweet from Jason Kligier (plus Maddie Brozen and Rach Stevenson), Big Blue Bus is now on Google Transit!

  • Mark

    It’s completely bullshit that Metrolink tickets and passes are invalid on BBB. I sent an email to them to encourage BBB to start accepting Metrolink fare media; all other agencies in Los Angeles County accept them.

  • Mark B.

    SMBBB participates in EZ; however Metrolink riders may NOT ride free in SMBBB. This is really inconsistent and it’s this lack of integration that make public transit harder than it must.

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