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MARTA's Atlanta Tourist Loop

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downtown_loop_header.gif

Name: Atlanta Tourist Loop (ATL)

Launch date: Downtown - April 29th

Midtown - Possibly May 28th

Routes: (100) Downtown or south (attached)

(101) Midtown or north (TBD)

Both routes will intersect at North Ave MARTA station and on Ivan Allen Blvd. Buses will run in a clockwise loop.

No. of stops:

Downtown: 13 (mainly at hotels and major attractions). However, passengers will be able to flag the bus to stop at any regular MARTA stop along the way.

Midtown: TBD

Schedule: Weekdays

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I've been waiting to see a definite route for months - not exactly what I thought it would be. But it is a half mile from home & goes by my office.

But should hopefully have a good run...

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I'm waiting to see the Midtown route. The good thing for me personally is that it goes down Ivan Allen, so I can step out my back door and hop on this bus. I thought I was going to have to walk over to the aquarium to catch it. Hopefully the Midtown bus will come all the way down Ivan Allen too. Given that we know it will go to the aquarium and the North Avenue MARTA station, I'd say there is a good chance it will go down Ivan Allen at least to Centennial Olympic Park drive. If it is a big success, maybe they'll also increase the frequency.

Since the aquarium is going to be the meeting point of the two routes, it would be nice if installed a Breeze vending machine or two there. I'm guessing that once the whole system is converted over to Breeze, that you'll be able to buy daily passes from the machines. It would be a huge improvement over being required to go to a RideStore to buy one of the very limited number of choices in passes. Since many tourists will start their sightseeing with the aquarium, it would be a logical place for the vending machines.

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I am very glad for this, I only wish MARTA would expand their rail lines into more of Atlanta's Intown Neighborhoods, or add more stations between the ones that already exist.

Maybe that's why Atlantans are so fit...

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Looks like a good idea. I've been waiting for something good like this to come along.

Of course, I still don't see Turner Filed on there. It would be nice if it could have been listed. At least the Braves shuttle still covers it come game time.

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They probably left Turner Field off on purpose for several reasons:

1) The bus would end up getting off schedule on game days due to the change in traffic density around the stadium. Even with the reserved lanes they mark off for the buses, it still takes more time.

2) On non-game days, going to the stadium would be pointless waste of gas. Eliminating that part of the route on non-game days would go against one of the primary purposes of having the loop, which was to have a simple easy to understand route and schedule without any variances.

3) The bus would end up swamped with people going to the game, which would mess it up for people who want to attend the other attractions using the bus.

4) There is currently a $1 surcharge for the Braves shuttle due to the need to pay drivers overtime to run that route. People would try to get around the surcharge by using the shuttle, causing MARTA to need to put more ATL loop buses in service around game time, which would cause the same overtime problem again.

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Say bye-bye to both the Downtown and Midtown Tourist Loops.

As of Dec 2007, MARTA plans on cutting those routes entirely while supposedly rerouting other routes to take their place.

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I'm not surprised.

I've always thought that if it were geared toward visitors, it needed to be different than just a regular Marta bus with a cute logo on it, as few tourists have any interest in Marta's bus system. IMO a "tourist" service would work better with a route similar to the proposed streetcar loop and an entirely different type of vehicle such as the trolleys used by that entrepreneur before he ran out of money.

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I'm not surprised.

I've always thought that if it were geared toward visitors, it needed to be different than just a regular Marta bus with a cute logo on it, as few tourists have any interest in Marta's bus system. IMO a "tourist" service would work better with a route similar to the proposed streetcar loop and an entirely different type of vehicle such as the trolleys used by that entrepreneur before he ran out of money.

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