SPRINGFIELD TWP. Ohio -- After making it to the final round of a national, online "Sorriest Bus Stop" contest, Cincinnati Metro has relocated its stop on Daly Road near Pinehollow Lane, transit officials announced Wednesday.
Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority spokeswoman Brandy Jones said on Twitter, "The stop in question was removed and relocated further down the road to a safer location. There is also a bus stop nearby at Daly & Hearthstone Drive, both of which serve the residents in that community."
The stop in question was removed and relocated further down the road to a safer location. There is also a bus stop nearby at Daly & Hearthstone Drive, both of which serve the residents in that community.
Let me know if you have any questions
— Brandy Jones (@mrsbrandyjones) September 12, 2018
Now, it's nearer a sidewalk, and people who would use that stop no longer have to choose between waiting on the side of the street or climbing over a guardrail into the roadside weeds. However, Better Bus Coalition co-founder Cam Hardy said that doesn't solve long-standing problems with the cash-strapped Metro system as a whole.
"We have a bus system that does not connect people to the needs of today, and our bus stops show it," he said. "There are some bus stops that shouldn't be bus stops, but routes need to run that way. On the other hand there are routes that are outdated.
"(The current system is) like ‘Here you are, poor people. Take this and here you are,'" he said. "And that's it. We have to change that."
Cleveland-based journalist Angie Schmitt runs the contest for StreetsblogUSA, a national website that reports on alternative transportation, transit, bicycle and pedestrian issues.
"In a perfect world, Streetsblog wouldn’t have to shame local transit agencies and transportation departments into making bus stops meet minimum safety standards," Schmitt wrote Wednesday after SORTA announced it had moved the stop. "But clearly that’s not the world we live in yet."
This isn't the first time the contest has prompted action, Schmitt said. The runner-up in Streetsblog's first contest in 2016 -- a stop in Kansas City -- was "completely revamped" last year.
WCPO first reported on Metro's advance through thecontest last month, when it zoomed into the second round, with readers outvoting another "sorry" stop in Ann Arbor, Mich., by an 85-percent margin.
In the rounds to follow, the Metro stop was voted "sorrier" than other stops in McKees Rocks, Penn., and New Orleans.
As of this writing, voting was still underway in the final round against a stop in Vancouver. Late Thursday morning, Vancouver had pulled ahead of Cincinnati by 606 out of roughly 3,000 votes.
Voting is set to close at 11 p.m. Thursday. Schmitt said, if Cincinnati wins, the "Sorriest Bus Stop" title would be awarded "posthumously."
News of the stop's relocation came just hours after City Council approved a plan to test a bus-only traffic lane on Main Street Downtown.