"I guess because of the lack of transportation, not including cabs, I didn't go as often as I wanted to to downtown," Esquivel said via Facebook on Thursday.
Esquivel and other university students, as well as the general public, may have a new transportation option starting
"By opening up transportation to our downtown area and events, we are inviting an often under-served section of our population to safely take advantage of
"The secondary effects will be seen as new businesses develop and established businesses flourish due to increased pedestrian traffic and new possibilities. We want people to leave their cars at home, take advantage of what our city has to offer and find new adventures on every corner. I believe it's important to open transportation from the area surrounding the
The shuttles would run about every half-hour
"SFUAD has specifically identified the need for supplemental public transportation service to enable SFUAD students and the neighboring public to access the Railyard and downtown Plaza areas on weekend nights," according to a resolution that Gonzales is sponsoring.
"The university's location on St. Michael's Drive currently doesn't afford our students many nightlife options within walking distance, so this proposal is a welcome opportunity that will allow them a more convenient and safe way to explore what
Plans call for the
"This pilot project, if successful, could serve as a model for similar public transportation service expansions linking other residential institutions of higher learning, namely
"In theory, it sounds good," said City Councilor
The mayor's resolution states that the city's Santa Fe Pick-Up shuttle operation could run the program with existing fleet and staff with "only minimal additional operating expense that can be absorbed in the existing budget."
Santa Fe Pick-Up currently services the downtown area and
"We'll just make do and move funds around to cover this expense," he said. "We're not going to cut service anywhere else."
Santa Fe Pick-Up has a fleet of five shuttles, and drivers are part-time operators who don't work a full 40 hours, he said.
"We can allocate some of those resources to the evening hours," Smithson said.
When asked if the school was willing to contribute funding to the effort, Hinz was noncommittal. "We are open to exploring a long-term solution to help fund regular shuttle service around the city for our students," he said. "For now, we're working closely with the city's
The free shuttle service could "bring that energy associated with the university to downtown," said City Councilor
"We're always looking for ways to make sure that our downtown areas are attracting an entire demographic, the youthful and everybody else," he said. "It's not that we don't have that happening, but in an effort to promote it more significantly, that's what this is an effort to do."
The pilot project could also expose young people who are about to enter the workforce that
"We talk a lot about our youth blight, about the aging of our population, about the fact that our young people too often depart the city and go elsewhere to build their lives and work," he said. "This is an effort to try and make sure that the city remains relevant to our young people."
In a statement issued by the university, senior
"It's a service I would have liked to see my sophomore year when I first arrived to campus, actually," he said. "It is encouraging to hear that the community is listening to our need for more transportation and nightlife activities in
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