Century & Molino To Pensacola Bus Is ECAT’s Most Expensive; Riders Say Most Valuable

December 31, 2008

The Escambia County Area Transit bus that runs from Century and Molino to Pensacola is the most expensive bus per person and the most expensive bus per hour in the entire public transportation system in the county. But to those that ride it, the “Route 60″ bus in the one of the most important buses in the ECAT network.

The “Route 60″ bus makes three weekday trips between Century and the ECAT transfer center where it allows riders to connect to the rest of the ECAT network. It makes the run twice on Saturdays.

“It’s so valuable,” Brenda Spencer said. Spencer is a frequent passenger on the bus, riding between her home in Century and her job downtown in the county attorney’s office. “It is truly needed in Century, even if it does need more passengers. I wish more people would take advantage of it.”

The bus costs $16.27 per passenger to operate, according to ECAT numbers from the last fiscal year. That’s the most expensive cost per passenger by far over any other bus in the system, with every other route falling below $10 per person (except for a free tourist route that runs to Pensacola Beach). In fact, is almost twice the next most expensive route per person, a 12th Avenue area route that costs ECAT $8.68 per person. The Century and Molino to Pensacola bus is also the most expensive per hour to operate in the ECAT system, at $78.29 per hour.

route60b.gifBut the bus provides transportation to and from Pensacola for Century and Molino residents that otherwise might not have a way to get to and from Pensacola, Spencer said. And, it’s much easier and cheaper than driving.

“It has saved me so much money,” Spencer said. “And it has saved me mentally and physically. It’s given me time to do my reading, do my Sunday School lesson and more while riding to work.”

A total of 7,819 riders took the Route 60 bus over a one year period. That compares to 145,883 riders on a Fairfield Drive area bus.

Spencer said she would like to see more Century residents take advantage of the bus, whether it be for shopping trips, or doctor visits, or any other trip to Pensacola.

“It is such a wonderful group of people to ride with,” she said. “It’s like a family atmosphere. We’ve gotten to know each other.”

“Ride the bus, ride the bus, ride the bus,” Spencer added. “I can’t advertise that enough. Ride the bus.”

For a printable pdf Route 60 map, schedule and rate information, click here.

Pictured above middle: The “Route 60″ Century and Molino to Pensacola ECAT route map. Pictured below: A timetable for the bus. Click to enlarge.



6 Responses to “Century & Molino To Pensacola Bus Is ECAT’s Most Expensive; Riders Say Most Valuable”

  1. Redhead on December 31st, 2008 7:56 pm

    I myself see the bus come right past my home on 95-A each day and I can set my clock by it at lunch it is so on time. Also, each evening as it comes up and the sun has gone down the lights are on inside and you can see the people who are the riders. I am sure some of you don’t even realize this service was started to help the people who had evacuated from Hurricane Katrina to the old Molino School to help them in getting their lives back on track. I think its a wonderful thing thats happening for the whole community. There are some who feel that they are above riding the public buses. They have those people up North also who think they are above the subway. Some like to think still today that they are better than others as we have witnessed here. Thanks for listening. Oh and by the way E.keep driving please. LOL

  2. N.A. Smith on December 31st, 2008 11:01 am

    It is really too bad the north end cannot receive the benefits of bus routes. Not only to go to work “in the big city” but also elderly/disabled to get to doctor appointments etc. Every county COULD find the $$ to put more buses out for this use. Being a social worker I see the terrible times poor, elderly and disabled people have in obtaining transportation.
    My county has excellant handicap and bus services. 75 cents a trip….period and they run every 30 minutes to different points.

  3. Elizabeth on December 31st, 2008 10:29 am

    Maybe some of the reason that people don’t use ECAT more is because they don’t know exactly how it works. Not everyone has internet access. Do they mail route schedules with instruction on how to plan a trip?

    Yeah, robt, that makes sense. The north end will keep paying their taxes that fund ECAT and we’ll let the south end use them all. In saying “Every bus you look at is virtually empty,” that’s not just the route 60 buses that are empty. You wonder why the ECAT bus windows are tinted so dark? It’s so that you don’t see your money getting thrown away! I’ve never seen a full ECAT bus…or even a half-full one.

    One more thought. We’ve seen the problems with the ECUA trash pickup mess. Try getting an appointment to a local health department. Only 3 ECAT trips and those are in jeopardy. Can you imagine the problems northern Escambia county will have if Escambia All for One has its way?

  4. Beegee on December 31st, 2008 9:52 am

    Obviously one of these commentators does not live in the north end …….I think a little more education and understanding will help the issue……..sure,I understand it’s mostly our choice of places to live….but,not everyone has the means to do this……..I often feel the very same way around hurricane season……when the beach folks start wanting a lot of pity when there million dollar houses {which are built on very vulnerable spots} are blown to bits by the wind and water……it makes me,for a while,feel the same thing!!!! “If you want to build a house “on” the water and in sand”,that’s your privilege……but don’t complain when the big bad wind and his friend Mr.Water tears it down!!! Hello!!Make better choices……Then I must realize that it is still their right to build a house and live where they want to…..that’s where the education and understanding come in………..

  5. Mark on December 31st, 2008 8:27 am

    Robt — There’s not another bus every 15 minutes in the north end. It’s three buses per day. Period.

    I don’t want to pay my taxes to pay for your soccer parks, tennis courts and bridges to the beach. All things we don’t have up here. I don’t want to pay the south end’s way either.

  6. robt on December 31st, 2008 8:18 am

    Hey, if you want to live in Molino or Century City, that’s your business – I just don’t belive I need to pay your way into P’Cola. Every bus you look at is virtually empty. I have a suggestion, buy smaller, less expensive, and more economical buses. If there is no room (which never happens), so what, there will be another one coming by in 15 minutes.

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