Fixing Weaver Dairy Road's Bus Service

Coffee and buses, under most circumstances, discussing these two seemingly unrelated things in the same sentence would seem strange, that is unless you're talking about a certain part of Chapel Hill. I of course am talking about Weaver Diary Road, a fairly major thoroughfare in the Northern part of of town whose underwhelming bus service marks a major problem for the Chapel Hill Transit system.

The fundamental problem lies in the fact that the current bus line that services Weaver Diary Road, the T Route, only goes as far as East Chapel Hill High School. If a resident of the lower section of Weaver Dairy wants to go grab coffee at the popular Joe Van Gogh cafe located at the Timberlyne shopping complex via public transit, they will be forced to take a long and complicated route with at the very least 1 transfer. Furthermore, Joe Van Gogh is but one of many prominent businesses located at the intersection of MLK Boulevard and Weaver Dairy Road, all of which are not easily accessible to the residents of lower Weaver Dairy Road due to the current alignment of the T Route. 

The solution is incredibly simple, just extend the bus route down the hill to the end of Weaver Diary Road. The infrastructure is already in place thanks to the recent redevelopment which included built-in bus pull offs to allow for service without disrupting vehicle traffic. The solution is very clear, use the existing stops and extend service down the hill.

The extension of this route would serve to connect hundreds of households in one of the more residential areas of the town to the commercial centers at Chapel Hill North and Timberlyne giving residents access to two grocery stores, multiple medical facilities and two different movie theaters. When people in residential areas are directly linked via public transit to the businesses they frequent, good things happen. Local businesses get more traffic, especially from those that cannot, or prefer not to drive, pollution and traffic congestion go down and a more connected community is formed. In the end the whole public transit debate amounts to whether or not using a bus can be a reasonably convenient alternative to driving. Right now this equation is not in Weaver Dairy Road's favor. I don't know about you but an hour long bus trip sure does dissuade me from even considering using the bus the next time I want a cup of coffee from Joe Van Gogh or pick up groceries from Food Lion. The lack of complete bus service on Weaver Dairy road is a problem that desperately needs to be addressed so that we all have a little more freedom in how we get to our favorite coffee places. 

If you live in this part of Chapel Hill please let the Town Council know you care about this project by shooting a short email to the address below:

The full proposal can be viewed here.

I will be presenting this plan to the Chapel Hill Town Council on Wednesday, December 3rd.


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