Editorial: Stanford to boost weekend shuttle buses to Caltrain
- Published Monday, April 2, 2007, by the Stanford Daily
Stranded students at Caltrain: Hopefully no more
Nothing is more frustrating than returning to campus from an amazing
spring break, only to find oneself stranded at the Palo Alto Caltrain
station. It's a long walk to the dorms, and two bags of luggage full
of mementos from the Bahamas don't make it any easier. If all goes
as planned, Parking and Transportation will spare countless students
from this dismal fate with a long-overdue increase in the free
service on the weekends surrounding spring break -- May 24 and April 1.
During spring break, some 8,000 Stanford students depart for fun and
exciting vacation spots around the globe. But before they can hit the
beaches or return to campus afterward, many of those students must
first get to the Caltrain station via train (from the San Jose
airport) or the KX bus (from SFO).
In years past, getting from the dorms to the Caltrain station and
back was a serious damper on spring break joviality. Parking and
Transportation Services would only run the sparse weekend Margaruite
schedule, if it actually ran any buses at all. The irony, of course,
is that many students only use public transportation at the beginning
or end of breaks. During the rest of the school year, students often
find rides or use the cars they keep on campus, but, the one time
students need it most, P&TS offers scant options. Encouraging public
transportation is always environmentally responsible, but the
beginning and end of spring break represent a special opportunity to
reach a larger group of students. Now, P&TS has taken a first step to
fix this problem by announcing a new, expanded spring break service
that will pick up students and meet Caltrain trains at the beginning
of break from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, March 24 and again at the
end of break when students return to campus from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m.
on Sunday, April 1.
This sounds good on paper, and we at The Daily commend P&TS's effort.
We know, however, that implementation is not always easy -- at least
two students we talked to were left stranded when their bus didn't
arrive at Tressider on Saturday morning despite the new schedule.
After waiting 20 minutes past the stated arrival time, they ended up
walking across campus. Hopefully P&TS fixed this problem by April 1.
But even so, P&TS leaves those students who arrive on the Saturday
before classes with a long walk or wait ahead of them.
Even given this room for improvement, we commend P&TS for listening
to student's needs and for making spring break that much more