x002548's Blog

Not Just a Number - Brett Kaiser
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Original Post Discussing The Startup of the West Orange Ridership Community

News Update 11/18/2005:  The following email addresses are getting bounced.  If it looks like one of yours, please contact me so I can correct it. nelsone23@aol.comdebcalalng@yahoo.com, myersjay@hotmail.comrfdoven@comcast.net, mkriton@dc37.net

Please Note! To be accurate with our reporting of service interuptions, for morning pickups, please be at your pick up points at least 5 or 10 minutes before the arrival of the shuttle.

The town of West Orange, NJ, has a very convenient service entitled “Midtown Direct Shuttle Bus Service”. 

Click Here for the West Orange Midtown Direct Shuttle Service Schedule

Current List of our Drivers Name's, what Route and times they have

Ridership Community Route Volunteers

The service has several Morning and evening runs with several stops in the Valley, Gregory and St. Clouds sections of town.  For areas outside these sections, a park and ride has been established in the Valley at the corner of Valley Road and Main Street.  Not only is the service a boon for an ever overcrowding Essex County, it is also the environmentally right thing to do.  Add to the mix the fuel problems that we face today and you have a service that should grow to encompass the entire town, and add additional runs.  It is such a popular service that all of the surronding towns also supply the same service.

The service however is outsourced to a 3rd party vendor, the Occupational Center of Orange.  We have had occasional issues with the service in the past, but not until of late has the service become unreliable, to the point of nonexistance.  Riders have called the Hotline that is supplied, but rarely get a response.  When a response has been supplied, the answers are unsatisfactory or meant to deny responsibility for the problem.  Since it is my guess that none of the complaints are logged, I will use this space for such a log.

In addition, since singly, the comments and complaints go unnoticed by the town and/or the Occupational Center, I am suggesting that the ridership form a community. This community will be the voice of the riders and will seek action and accountability from the town and the Occupational center. If a service is provided these 2 bodies must understand that the ridership is depending on the reliability of this service.  As a rider for the last 3 years, I have seen quite a bit of things that can be added to a list of issues that need to be addressed. From vehicle safety to driver retention to accountability,  a list will be assembled. We will also be collecting a list of names of all the rider that would like to join this community.

Over the past week, the morning service has simply not shown up. I am fortunate that I live about a mile and half to the Highland Avenue Train station. I did miss my morning meeting, but I was still able to get to the office. With winter approaching however, this is not a situation I would be looking forward too. In addition, the Highland Avenue station is located in an area of burned out and abandoned factories. It is not a very good place to walk though.

A note will be sent to the mayor outlining our intent to form this community and will seek his guidance on how to resolve these issue. I have also reached out to the NYC Straphangers Campaign, and their President offer their support. For now, I will start the log. You can also post your compliants at this site and I will add them to the log. 

Print | posted on Wednesday, November 16, 2005 4:29 PM |

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# West Orange Ridership Community

11/16/2005 4:33 PM | x002548's Blog
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# re: Original Post Discussing The Startup of the West Orange Ridership Community

The # 2 bus did not show up for service to the 7:34 train on November 17th.
11/17/2005 9:37 AM | Roger Bruneau
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# re: Original Post Discussing The Startup of the West Orange Ridership Community

12/19/05 UNBELIEVABLE! I was on the first evening shuttle (12-01) out of Orange and was kicked off the bus, left stranded on lower Forest Hill Road, I live on upper Lawrence Avenue. I was so happy that a shuttle actually showed up for this run, the last thing I imagined was that I would wind up walking home.
JACKIE, apparantly did not know that the first shuttle out of Orange does both runs. When I informed her it did, she started arguing with me. So , I showed her the shuttle schedule that states this, in black and white, she continued to argue with me and show me a map of her route, telling me she ONLY does Route 1. She said she would only take me back to the Orange train station. Of course I tried to persuade her to READ the Shuttle schedule and she started to get irate, saying I don't need to do this, I need to get back to the train station. My response was perhaps if she could read, you would not be arguing with me.
I am sending a copy of this email to the Mayor. I have been riding this shuttle service for 5 year and have NEVER experience such rude, obnoxious behavior from a driver. I DO NOT want to see this woman driving the shuttle anymore.
12/19/2005 6:14 PM | Flora Bourne
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# re: Original Post Discussing The Startup of the West Orange Ridership Community

Hi everyone -- maybe it's the eggnog talking, but I feel like being positive tonight.

First: Brett should be officially applauded for taking this all upon himself on our behalf. He clearly spent many hours organizing this site, initiating contact with straphangers and mayors and such, rallying participation, and being the engine that drives this effort. Brett, you've done a yeoman's job, and I for one appreciate it.

Second: I want to put in a good word for Jackie. After tonight's horrific commute, that bus waiting for us in Orange was the most welcome sight anyone could have hoped for. I'd like to say that despite the misunderstanding with Flora, in my experience Jackie is always quite pleasant. Let's give her a chance on learning curve. Yes, she's a "public servant" -- but how many of us would want to trade jobs with her? Let's try to have a little perspective; compared with SOME of the drivers we've had, she's a keeper.

Okay, I'm done being nice. Signing off...
12/19/2005 7:38 PM | Lisa Batchelder
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# No Route #1 This morning

Being in my 9th month of pregnancy - it's so nice to wait in the icy snow for a Jitney that doesn't come...
Thankfully there are nice people on Forest Hill Road that offer rides...
1/3/2006 12:35 PM | Blake Smith
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