Bus stop 7918 was closed during the construction of the Countdown store in Newtown. I don’t remember how long it was down for, but it was a significant length of time. With the store opening today, I’d asked Metlink when the stop would be reopening. I think we were both surprised by the answer: Also today.
Encouraged by this, I went down to the stop this morning and caught the next bus coming along. The driver insisted that the stop wasn’t open yet. The paint is down and the sign is up, but the bus stop isn’t really a bus stop. She let us on anyway.
A couple questions fall out of this instantly:
- Why wasn’t Metlink advertising the reopening of the bus stop?
- Why didn’t Metlink have forehand knowledge that the bus stop was reopening?
- Why is there different information coming from Metlink and Go Wellington?
- How are passengers supposed to know what is or isn’t a bus stop if all the markings are there?
This highlights a common failure for Wellington’s public transportation system: communication. Metlink doesn’t handle public communication overly well, which is also hindered by the disconnect between Metlink and the operators. I shouldn’t have to ask when a stop is opening. Everyone should know the details well in advance. We need to do better than this.