With University of Texas students returning, many Capital Metro bus routes resume normal service

Capital Metro's 300 bus route, which travels along Oltorf Street, Pleasant Valley Road and Springdale Road, has increased its frequency to run every 10 minutes. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Capital Metro's 300 bus route, which travels along Oltorf Street, Pleasant Valley Road and Springdale Road, has increased its frequency to run every 10 minutes. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)

Capital Metro's 300 bus route, which travels along Oltorf Street, Pleasant Valley Road and Springdale Road, has increased its frequency to run every 10 minutes. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)

When the city of Austin and Travis County issued stay-at-home orders in March and schools canceled classes, ridership on Capital Metro's buses and trains nosedived as local residents stayed home as much as possible.

In February, ridership on the public transportation agency's vehicles hovered around 100,000 trips per day. Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, the daily number of riders has settled to a consistent level of about 40,000 daily riders.

With ridership lower, Capital Metro cut some of its services accordingly. Now, with The University of Texas set to begin classes again Aug. 26 and Austin ISD students potentially returning in October, many of those services will be reinstated.

Roberto Gonzalez, Capital Metro's director of short-range planning, told the agency's board of directors that some bus routes will run more frequently with service resuming than they did before the pandemic in order to provide access to essential businesses while also ensuring riders can stay distanced on the bus.

Those routes providing more frequent service include:

  • Route 1—North Lamar/South Congress: every 20 minutes

  • Route 7—Duval/Dove Springs: every 10 minutes

  • Route 10—South First Street/Red River: every 12 minutes

  • Route 20—Manor Road/Riverside: every 12 minutes

  • Route 300—Springdale/Oltorf: every 10 minutes


Gonzalez also said Capital Metro's UT shuttle service is resuming along with the start of classes. The shuttles will run with more frequent service from the afternoon until 8 p.m. to adjust to class schedules that are more spaced out to ensure social distancing in classrooms, and the service will be suspended at Thanksgiving break. UT will have a hybrid model of in-person and online classes from August through November—students will not return to campus after leaving for Thanksgiving.


Not all service is returning to pre-pandemic levels. According to Gonzalez, commuter rail and commuter bus services that run between Austin and suburban areas will continue at the reduced service levels in place since March.
By Jack Flagler
Jack is the editor of Community Impact Newspaper's Central Austin and Southwest Austin editions. He began his career as a sports reporter in Massachusetts and North Carolina before moving to Austin in 2018. He grew up in Maine and graduated from Boston University, but prefers tacos al pastor to lobster rolls. You can get in touch at jflagler@communityimpact.com


MOST RECENT

Romeo's Pizza held its Georgetown groundbreaking April 6. (Courtesy Romeo's Pizza)
Romeo's Pizza coming to Georgetown; Vacancy Brewing opens in South Austin and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from the Central Texas area.

Photo of a Moderna vaccine vial
Austin Public Health coronavirus vaccine portal opens to all adults April 12

APH will continue outreach efforts to high-priority groups.

Austin Public Health holds a vaccination clinic at the Delco Activity Center in Northeast Austin. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Coronavirus updates from Austin, Travis County; governor bans 'vaccine passports' and more top Central Texas news

Read the most popular business and community news from the past week from Central Texas.

Tavel Bristol-Joseph has started a scholarship fund that will provide $6,000 to two Austin Community College Culinary Arts students and give them opportunity to be mentored by Bristol-Joseph and to stage at one of the Emmer & Rye group's five restaurants. (Courtesy Emmer & Rye)
Austin chef starts scholarship and mentorship program for Austin Community College students

Tavel Bristol-Joseph started the scholarship fund, which will provide $6,000 to two ACC students and give them the opportunity to stage at one of the Emmer & Rye group's five restaurants.

Snow and ice cover the pond on the southeastern side of the Mueller development in East Austin in February. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
After winter storm, Austin puts together a plan for better temporary shelters

The locations, which could be schools, libraries or recreation centers, would be disconnected from traditional infrastructure and be able to sustain operations if the city were to experience widespread power or water outages.

Austin ISD is holding community conversation sessions April 12-May 6. (Nicholas Cicale/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin ISD community conversation sessions continuing through May 6

The series offers AISD families an opportunity to learn about the district’s strategic plan and ongoing budget planning.

Photo of a spread of fancy food
Lutie's Garden Restaurant now open at Commodore Perry Estate

The restuarant features "Texas heritage fare" by an award-winning husband-and-wife pair of chefs.

A resident at EdenHill Communities receives their second dose of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine. (Lauren Canterberry/Community Impact Newspaper)
Amid the struggle to get vaccinated, these Austin moms have helped over 3,900 people get appointments

The women volunteer their time searching for hard-to-find time slots that often become available in the middle of the night.

Photo of Austin Central Library
Austin Public Library to begin resuming in-person services May 10

Austin Public Library will begin reopening branches to the public in May after operating with only digital and curbside pickup services since June 2020.

The upper decks of I-35 that run between Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Airport Boulevard were constructed in the 1970s and could come down as part of a project the Texas Department of Transportation is planning for the highway through Central Austin. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
As time runs short to weigh in on a $4.9B I-35 project, Austin community members say they hope TxDOT is listening

The official comment period for community members to share their thoughts on the highway closes April 9.