Today, IndyGo began service of the new crosstown along 86th streetÂ (click to open .pdf) on the north-side of Indianapolis. The service, one of the few of the fixed services which does not run through downtown, connects a number of north-side spoke routes along 86th street providing access to a multitude of jobs, medical facilities, grocery stores and other retail options. Additionally, the growing number of apartment complexes on the north-side now have a new option to get to and fro without having to fight automobile congestion which is rampant at most times during the day, whether it is rush hour or not.
The new service runs on 30 minute head-ways which is technically not frequent, but compares to most other routes in the system including the 7 routes which provide transfers. The 86 fills a much needed niche in the local transit network in that it connects north-side population centers with high intensity destinations without a lengthy trip downtown to do so.
The line’s design hits many check marks on the list of what would constitute a well designed transit line for the most part because it hits most of the destinations on the way, lies in a straight line and its designation, the 86, leaves little room to figure out where in the city it is located. In many ways this new service, designed to boost ridership, is an interesting experiment. Will the Â north-side embrace more public transit in an already congested automobile arterial? I am anxious to see how ridership numbers trend on this new line.