JTA's On-Time Transit Operations Campaign (OTTO)November 21, 2013 8 comments Print Article
According to a recent press release, the Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) has launched its On-Time Transit Operations (OTTO) campaign – following the re-opening of the Mathews Bridge – designed to improve on-time performance and enhance customer service.
The first step of the campaign focuses on six of the most heavily traveled routes – AR6, CT1, CT2, K2, L7 and M5 – which represents 35% of JTA’s weekday ridership.
• Improving the schedules on all six routes so they are more reliable.
• Adding a bus on the K2 during the afternoon rush hours between noon to 6 p.m.
• Extending peak hours an extra 30 minutes on the L7 in the morning from 5:30 to 11 a.m. and evening from 1:50-6:30 p.m.
• Increasing the frequency of service on the CT2 by 25% -- from every 60 minutes to every 45 minutes – during the afternoon from noon-6 p.m.
The route improvements, originally scheduled to begin Oct. 7, were delayed when the Mathews Bridge was damaged after being hit by a cargo ship.
“Our customers make 42,000 trips a day on JTA buses. They depend on us to get to work, school and medical appointments – so it’s important to be on time,” said JTA CEO Nathaniel P. Ford, Sr. “Through the OTTO campaign, we will analyze each route – starting with those most impacted by delays and develop solutions for our customers.”
“In March, shortly after I joined JTA, we began evaluating our routes and found that one of the biggest factors impacting our on-time performance was outdated time schedules,” said Lisa Darnall, vice president of JTA Transit Operations. “Many had not been adjusted over the years, despite the growth that has occurred in Jacksonville. And we’re not stopping after these six routes – we have already begun work on schedule adjustments for the next six routes, which will be announced in January.”
In addition, JTA will soon pilot-test a NextBus system that will allow customers to track when the next bus is due at their stop – via the web, a smart phone app or phone call – saving them valuable time.
Customers can help by using the STAR card or by having their fare in-hand when they board the bus, using as few coins as possible, and using newer, crisper bills to avoid jams at the farebox. Customers are also encouraged to find their seats quickly so buses can depart safely.
When Ford took over the helm of the Authority last December, JTA buses arrived on time 65 percent of the time. After focusing, monitoring and analyzing data, JTA implemented ways to improve on-time performance. As a result, JTA reached 72 percent in July and greater improvement is expected as the OTTO is fully implemented.
“I am proud of the team effort I’ve seen from our operators and staff to implement OTTO, and the progress we’ve made,” said Ford. “As JTA furthers its quest to attract more riders and become a regional transportation leader, we will continue to make excellent customer service a priority. Our next on-time performance milestone is to be consistently hitting 75 percent by June 2014.”
Customers can get more information on OTTO by picking up a bus schedule at the Rosa Parks Transit Station or calling JTA Customer Service at (904) 630-3100 or (904) 630-3191 for the hearing impaired; or visiting www.jtafla.com
The Jacksonville Transportation Authority is an independent state agency governed by a seven-member board of directors. JTA operates Jacksonville’s public bus service, downtown automated Skyway and paratransit service, in addition to building and maintaining roads and bridges. JTA’s mission is to improve Northeast Florida’s economy, environment and quality of life by providing safe, reliable, and efficient multimodal transportation services and facilities. For more information, visit www.jtafla.com.