Time changes biggest adjustment many Metro users will face

Beginning March 30, WUSTL faculty, staff and students using Metro to travel to and from WUSTL campuses will see some changes. Metro will reduce the frequency of MetroLink train stops and alter several bus routes serving the campuses.

Starting March 30, during the typical morning and evening commute hours, MetroLink trains will run every 15 minutes to stops serving WUSTL campuses: the Central West End, Skinker, Big Bend, Delmar Loop and Forsyth stations. Trains currently run every 10 minutes during peak hours.

During non-peak hours, trains will run every 20 minutes, rather than the current 15 minutes.

Metro Bus routes around campus will see slight changes — most notably, the Gold Line will no longer travel south of the Clayton Transit Center to Richmond Heights, Brentwood, Brentwood Promenade and Maplewood Commons.

The Red Line will see minor changes in route directions but still will travel to Brentwood Promenade and Maplewood Commons.

The Green Line, which serves neighborhoods north of the Danforth Campus, will be unaffected.

“More than anything, changes will affect the timing many in the University community have become accustomed to,” said Nicholas Stoff, director of Parking & Transportation Services.

The changes are being made to help address Metro’s $10 million budget shortfall this year. Proposition M — a half-cent sales tax increase in St. Louis County to help fund Metro operations and MetroLink expansion — failed to pass in this past November’s election.

Metro representatives will be posted outside the Mallinckrodt Student Center on the Danforth Campus from 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Thursday, March 19, to distribute new Metro route maps and schedules and to answer questions about the changes.

On March 30, Metro will post representatives to answer questions at Metro and MetroLink stops throughout the area as well.

Among other reductions effective March 30, Metro is cutting all bus service outside the Interstate 270 loop.

“Changes made by Metro were not severe in the areas immediately surrounding the University,” Stoff said. “WUSTL is located in a busy area, where there is high volume of Metro ridership — not to mention that these lines serve vital areas such as shopping and medical centers.”

Despite the reductions in Metro service, the University remains committed to the use of public transportation — a significant part of its sustainability goal of reducing its carbon footprint — and its U-Pass program.

“The U-Pass enables our campus community members to maneuver around the St. Louis area easily and free of charge,” Stoff said. “It is not only a way to reduce their carbon footprint, but also a way to reduce parking expenses and personal transportation overhead.”

Funded by the University, the U-Pass program provides benefits-eligible faculty and staff, full-time students and full-time employees of basic service contractors a Universal Metro Pass that allows free boarding of any Metro bus or MetroLink light-rail system train.

For more information about Metro changes and to locate revised schedules and route maps, visit metrostlouis.org or call Metro at 231-2345.

For more information on the U-Pass program, visit parking.wustl.edu/upass.htm.