C-Tran to change express service into Portland

By Dameon Pesanti, Columbian staff writer

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C-Tran is making changes to several of its bus services in hopes of bringing some relief to its riders — especially those who commute into Portland.

“The goal with this round of service changes is really to improve the commuting experience for our express riders, in a nutshell,” said C-Tran spokeswoman Christine Selk. “Unfortunately our printed schedules have not kept pace with traffic that continues to worsen into the (Portland) downtown area.”

Starting Sept. 10, six express routes — the 105, 134, 164, 177, 190, 199 and seven fixed routes — the 7, 41, 47, 60, 65, 73 and 74 — will be affected. How each one will change varies from route to route.

Riders might feel the effects on routes that are losing trips, but they likely won’t notice when buses are dispatched on their routes differently.

Buses on the Route 105 I-5 Express, for example, might get bogged down in afternoon traffic and thus fall further and further behind schedule. But after the service change, a fresh bus might begin running the route later in the schedule, and thus making the stops on time.

“A lot of the changes are actually behind the scenes changes. They don’t always show up in the schedule,” Selk said.

However, the route will lose four morning trips.

Route 164 Fisher’s Landing Express will add two morning trips from Vancouver, remove six “reverse commute” trips and remove two peak trips. Some other schedule adjustments will be made.

Route 199 99th Street Express, will add a 5:25 a.m. southbound trip and have a few schedule changes.

There are a few changes to fixed-route service, as well.

The schedule of Route 60 Delta Park Limited will change to better sync connections and transfers with MAX during weekdays. Its name will also be changed to Route 60 Delta Park Regional.

Route 47 Battle Ground Limited, will no longer serve Delta Park. Instead, it will travel from Yacolt and Battle Ground to downtown Vancouver in the morning, and downtown Vancouver to Battle Ground and Yacolt in the evening. Consequentially, its name will be changed to Route 47 Battle Ground/Yacolt.

While a number of routes are affected in this upcoming service change, it’s significantly fewer than last September’s changes that altered 18 routes.

“We do this for one reason only, it’s to improve reliability and efficiency as a whole,” Selk said.