You may have read the rumors that Metro Transit is going to cut overnight service on the Green Line, due in part to to too many people using the trains as shelter. It’s a tough situation, to say the least, pitting public transit against the basic human right to security and a roof over one’s head.
As of now, it seems like the cuts are happening, at least according to the latest .pdf presentation from the agency. As part of the decision process, Metro Transit did a survey of overnight riders, asking people on the train where and why they were traveling between 1am and 4am on three different nights.
Here are the results:
(h/t to NUMTOT-Twin Cities for the link to the presentation.)
A little more than half the people onboard agreed to take the survey, and you can see that a large percentage of them were using the train as shelter. (I imagine that many of the people who refused to answer were also in this category, but we do not know that.)
Metro Transit’s next steps? That they are promising to:
- Continue HAT (Homeless Action Team) and Metro HRA (Housing Rental Assistance) efforts
- Coordinate transit service changes, including a replacement bus plan
- Fund additional data analysis to understand needs of people using transit as shelter (pending a Wilder Foundation contract)
- Fund additional case managers to work with individuals to connect them to services and housing
Stay tuned to this developing story, or post your thoughts below.
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