Welcome to the Concepts!

In this survey, we want to ask you about your goals and priorities for transit service in South Bend and Mishawaka.

 

To help you think about that, we’ve drawn two contrasting images of how the network could look, depending on what is most important to people and what the public’s priorities are. Both concepts assume that we can run the same amount of bus service as it did in late 2019, just before the pandemic.  We can’t add more service, so we have to make some hard decisions about what’s most important.

We've also drawn up two concepts that show what's possible with increased funding towards transit. We want to know how much investment you would be willing to provide into transit and the results you could get.

This survey is for everyone who lives or works in South Bend and Mishawaka. Whether you ride transit or not, your taxes help pay for bus service, so we want everyone's opinion.‍

Take the Survey!

It will only take a few minutes.

How Should We Design the Region's Bus Network?

It depends.

Imagine we are designing a transit network for this fictional city. The lines are roads and the dots are people and jobs.

Places with more dots close together are dense with activity. More people want to travel to and from those places. That dense activity is concentrated along the main roads.

The buses in the image are all the resources we have to run transit.

A fictional city we have to design the transit system for and 18 buses to serve them.

RIDERSHIP
If our goal is to get the most ridership from our system, we would concentrate transit resources where most people and jobs are close together. We can then provide high-frequency service that is very convenient and encourages people to ride transit in those areas.

Network Designed for Ridership Goals has only two routes covering most people and jobs with high frequency service.

COVERAGE
If our goal is to get transit coverage in as many areas as possible, we will have to spread transit resources out. Routes cannot be as frequent, and so not many people would find transit useful and convenient. However, there would be some transit coverage in as many areas as possible.

Network Designed for Coverage Goals has many routes covering most streets, people, and jobs, but with low frequecies.

Both goals are important, but within a limited budget shifting towards one means shifting away from the other.

The Ridership and Coverage Concepts

These concepts are NOT PROPOSALS. We will be developing the final plan later this year with your input.

Ridership Concept

This concept connects the busiest parts of the region with the best possible bus service (every 15 minutes or better). On average, more people can get to more places sooner with this concept, so ridership will be higher, but it doesn't cover as many people.

Coverage Concept

This concept expands the network to cover more area, but because there are so many routes, frequencies are low. Ridership is lower because people may not want to wait as long.

Red lines arrive every 15 minutes or less

Blue lines arrive every 30 minutes 

Green lines arrive every 60 minutes

Tan lines are peak-only or have a limited schedule

Red lines arrive every 15 minutes or less

Blue lines arrive every 30 minutes 

Green lines arrive every 60 minutes

Tan lines are peak-only or have a limited schedule

Ridership Concept South Bend Mishawaka.png

Outcomes

  • The average resident can reach 21% more jobs by transit in 45 minutes

  • These numbers are probably similar for other destinations, like school, shopping, etc.

  • 64% of residents are within a 1/2 mile walk of any transit service, compared to 78% now.

  • 59% of all residents are within a 1/2 mile walk of transit service that comes every 30 minutes or better, compared to 55% now

  • This concept would increase the number of jobs the average person could reach in 45 minutes by walking and transit compared to the Existing Network.

Coverage Concept South Bend Mishawaka.png

Outcomes

  • The average resident can reach 12% fewer jobs by transit in 45 minutes

  • These numbers are probably similar for other destinations, like school, shopping, etc.

  • 79% of residents are within a 1/2 mile walk of any transit service, compared to 78% now.

  • 30% of all residents are within a 1/2 mile walk of transit service that comes every 30 minutes or better, compared to 55% now

  • This concept would reduce the number of jobs the average person could reach in 45 minutes by walking and transit compared to the Existing Network.

Change in Access

Where can you be soon? Answering that question tells us a great deal about how useful a transit system is. The images below compare how far you can get from South Street Station, Downtown Mishawaka, or other key destinations in 45 minutes in the Ridership and Coverage concepts.

output_South Street Station.png
output_Mishawaka Transfer Center.png
output_St Mary's College.png
output_South Bend Memorial Hospital.png
output_Indiana University South Bend.png
output_Town and Country Shopping Center.png
output_South Bend Airport.png
output_Portage at Bendix.png
output_Notre Dame Library.png
output_Mishawaka High School.png

Looking for Elkhart & Goshen?

Click here to see concepts for Elkhart & Goshen.

Should the Region Invest More in Transit?

In the Choices Report, we looked at some peers for Transpo and the Interurban Trolley (operated by MACOG) and saw that both Transpo and Interurban Trolley provide less service compared to most of their peers and therefore get out less in terms of ridership and productivity compared to other transit agencies. Given these realities, there is a key value question about whether the region should invest more in transit to improve access to opportunity and increase ridership.

In this process, we've also drawn up two concepts that increase the amount of investment put into transit:

  • the Growth concept, which provides a moderate increase in investment, equal to the Ridership and Coverage concepts combined, and;

  • the Vision concept, which maximizes investment to maximize progress towards important community goals such as economic development, access to opportunity, air quality, and other goals.

Decision Space Diagram New300 ppi.png

The Growth and Vision Concepts

These concepts are NOT PROPOSALS. We will be developing the final plan later this year with your input.

Growth Concept

This concept provides both the frequency of the Ridership Concept and the additional places and neighborhoods served by the Coverage Concept. The additional service dramatically increases how many useful destinations an average resident can reach in a given amount of time, while also maintain and expanding coverage.

Vision Concept

The Vision Concept is a vastly improved network that would provide far more frequent service along most of the major corridors in South Bend and Mishawaka. It would also begin to introduce grid-like elements to better serve trips that begin and end outside of downtown.

Dark red lines arrive every 10 minutes or less

Red lines arrive every 15 minutes

Blue lines arrive every 30 minutes 

Green lines arrive every 60 minutes

Tan lines are peak-only or have a limited schedule

Dark red lines arrive every 10 minutes or less

Red lines arrive every 15 minutes

Blue lines arrive every 30 minutes 

Green lines arrive every 60 minutes

Tan lines are peak-only or have a limited schedule

Yellow boxes are demand-response zones

Growth Concept South Bend Mishawaka.png
Vision Concept South Bend Mishawaka.png

Outcomes

  • The average resident can reach 27% more jobs by transit in 45 minutes

  • These numbers are probably similar for other destinations, like school, shopping, etc.

  • 79% of residents are within a 1/2 mile walk of any transit service, compared to 78% now.

  • 17% of all residents are within a 1/2 mile walk of transit service that comes every 15 minutes or better, compared to 0% now*

  • This concept represents a 60% increase in service compared to the Existing Network

Outcomes

  • The average resident can reach 126% more jobs by transit in 45 minutes

  • These numbers are probably similar for other destinations, like school, shopping, etc.

  • 81% of residents are within a 1/2 mile walk of any transit service, compared to 78% now.

  • 50% of all residents are within a 1/2 mile walk of transit service that comes every 15 minutes or better, compared to 0% now*

  • This concept represents a 360% increase in service compared to the Existing Network

*The Existing Network does not have service that is every 15 minutes or better on any route.

Change in Access

Where can you be soon? Answering that question tells us a great deal about how useful a transit system is. The images below compare how far you can get from South Street Station, Downtown Mishawaka, or other key destinations in 45 minutes in the Growth and Vision concepts.

output_South Street Station.png
output_Mishawaka Transfer Center.png
output_St Mary's College.png
output_South Bend Memorial Hospital.png
output_Indiana University South Bend.png
output_Town and Country Shopping Center.png
output_South Bend Airport.png
output_Portage at Bendix.png
output_Notre Dame Library.png
output_Mishawaka High School.png

Looking for Elkhart & Goshen?

Click here to see concepts for Elkhart & Goshen.

Tell Us What You Think! Take the Survey!

It will only take a few minutes.

Learn more by reading the full Concepts Report.

Attend a public meeting to learn more and ask questions:

  • Virtual Public Meeting: Tuesday June 21, 2022 6:30-8:30pm

  • South Bend Open House: Tuesday July 12, 2022 from 3-7pm at Viva Nueda Church of God, 739 College Street

  • Mishawaka Open House: Tuesday, July 19, 2022 from 3-7pm at Mishawaka Public Library, 209 Lincolnway East

Questions? Contact the Project Team Here!