Emery Go-Round implements route changes, launches new mobile app

Published On January 6, 2017 | By Rob Arias | News & Commentary, Transit

The Emery Go-Round, Emeryville’s fare-less shuttle, implemented changes to its service routes last month. These service changes were initially proposed a year ago by The Emeryville Transportation Management Association (ETMA). The new routes were designed to alleviate overcrowding during commute hours and address longer travel times associated with ridership capacity and traffic congestion. Feedback provided by the public on the proposed route changes was captured in this email survey.

Commute Service (Monday– Friday, 7AM–10AM & 3PM–7PM)

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Standard Service (Monday– Friday)

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New real-time tracking mobile app

The ETMA also rolled out a new mobile app developed by Syncromatics with real-time tracking and transit times to replace the aging Nextbus tracking feature that had become unreliable (perhaps a wise move to cut bait on Nextbus in light of the recent Muni fiasco). The new app also offers maps, trip-planning and service delay alerts.

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Will Emeryville Go-Round ever make it to West Oakland BART?

The E’ville Eye has advocated for years for an EGR route to West Oakland BART after we observed that a majority of residents used it to get to San Francisco. This route could easily shave a half hour or more off riders’ roundtrip commute. 74% of riders say they would use the EGR more frequently if it went to West Oakland BART according to our 2013 reader poll.

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The ETMA countered this data by noting that their 2011 rider survey showed an 82% preference for MacArthur BART:

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One of the notable variables between our surveys is that ours was predominantly taken by Emeryville residents (the ones that arguably care more about traffic within our city). 87% of our survey responders identified themselves as Emeryville residents or residents of neighboring communities. EGR’s survey noted that only 44% of responders were Emeryville residents. Emeryville residents make up only 30% of EGR’s over 1.6 million annual riders according to ETMA executive director Roni Hattrup of Gray-Bowen-Scott.

This sets off an interesting argument now that resedential property owners are paying into the EGR through a property tax assessment. Should resident’s voices have more weight and should routes be altered to accommodate us. “It’s absurd that you haven’t added this yet” noted former councilmember Jac Asher’s husband Brian Carver in the ETMA public comments referring to the addition of a West Oakland BART route.

Park Avenue District neighbors led by PARC recently advocated that a private shuttle to West Oakland BART be included into the development of the Sherwin-Williams project as part of a negotiated Community Benefit Agreement. Neighbors anticipate that providing a “straight shot” to BART and into the city will encourage more to take it and reduce vehicle trips. There’s optimism that this service will somehow be folded into the EGR after the five-year agreement with the developer ends.

Service Announcements

EGR riders should note a recent service announcement that some of their routes have been altered to avoid the use of the freeway during the closure of the West MacArthur off-ramp to accommodate work by Caltrans. This route modification is expected to last 12 weeks.

Download the EmeryGo App for iOS →

Download the EmeryGo App for Android →

Real-time tracking can also be viewed without an app at egrshuttle.com →


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About The Author

is a third generation Californian and East Bay native who moved to Emeryville in 2003. A new parent in the community, he can often be seen walking his French Bulldog rescue "Fiona" around his Park Avenue District neighborhood, traversing the greenway on his bike or enjoying his favorite Emeryville small businesses. Rob's "day job" is as a creative professional.

4 Responses to Emery Go-Round implements route changes, launches new mobile app

  1. C Murray says:

    Linking to West Oakland BART is critical. We would continue to expand the use of public transportation if we could best access this key commute station.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I understand that if you just look at a map, or conceptually try to connect the dots, that a link between Emeryville and West Oakland BART is ideal. However, as someone who although not daily but weekly takes BART westbound from MacArthur Bart to SFO during peak hours (anywhere from 0600-0930) often there is literally no room for anyone to board at West Oakland. Having spent considerable time in Japan where rapid transit and personal space equates to something, versus what I witness very often where people are left behind at West Oakland because they don’t dare push any further (don’t blame them – it is pushing beyond what we normally accept here in urban US environments) – this whole idea of West Oakland BART as a panacea is really a false concept in peak hours as long as we have the limitations of BART and the transbay tunnel.

    Meanwhile the new changes with the Emery Go Round mean there is no ability to go from say Park Avenue area to Berkeley Bowl West without changing – and yet I’m now subject to assessment for the Go-Round. Taking Uber/Lyft more than I ever imagined. In the spirit of being part of a Community, I hope there are those that benefit from the changes, but I’m now paying more and have limited benefit, if in fact a diminished benefit.

  3. Jack says:

    Do you know who suggested splitting the Shellmound route into North & South? I take this bus every day and there has been so much confusion & everyone seems to dislike the change.

  4. Hi Evileye,

    Good News!! I hope they can expand this app somewhere outside San Francisco.

    Keep it up!

    Regards,
    Elias

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