The BusWatch starts here

RTA is launching new bus stop signage in the valley to coincide with the launch of new BusWatch app

Photos by Corey Evan/The Valley Chronicle
The familiar arrow, telling riders where the bus stops. By the end of 2018, they’ll be gone.

■ By Corey Evan / Reporter

For those of our readers who commute by bus to work, you know the routine: Spot the arrow-shaped sign, wait there, the bus stops there, you get on and off you go. But soon, you’ll have to look for a brand new sign.
Gone will be the arrow-shaped signs, and coming in will be signs with clearer, easy-to-read numbering. More than 2,500 bus stops are getting the whole new look, each with its own four-digit ID number which can be entered on RTA’s new “BusWatch” app. Pictured in this article is an example of a BusWatch sign already in place in Winchester.
So why change out an iconic bus stop sign? RTA Media and Public Relations Manager Bradley Weaver explained that the customer is always right.
“We think (the signs) were great and served their purpose but we are always looking for ways to enhance our service. We have listened to our customers’ concerns and these changes are a direct result of what our customers are asking for,” said Weaver. “The route numbers are easier to read from a distance. Plus, the signs are color-coded according to the type of service (regular service versus express service), are made of reflective material for better visibility at night, and carry new information like final route destinations.”
These changes should help passengers avoid boarding the wrong bus. Of course, this service isn’t exactly new. It’s been around Riverside for a while.

Photos by Corey Evan/The Valley Chronicle
The new signage comes with easy-to-read information. This one’s already up in Winchester.

“The updated signs will include BusWatch information so people can identify their stop number. The signage project as a whole, which includes the BusWatch signage at the stops, has begun with many downtown Riverside bus stops already benefitting from the signage,” said Weaver. “We will continue to replace the old signs with the new signs this year and expect to complete the project sometime during 2018.”
The app has already launched, and the new signs are soon coming to Hemet and San Jacinto!
“This year we expanded it to cover all routes and introduced an app. The new signs will carry BusWatch information so customers can identify their bus stop and track their bus,” said Weaver. “BusWatch essentially takes the guesswork out of travel by putting the power in our customers’ hands. They can now get instant information on route locations and arrival times. No more wondering when the bus will arrive.”
It can also give you an idea of whether you have time to go get a snack before boarding.
And since the valley has a plentiful number of elders and betters, as well as persons with disabilities, these changes should make their travel experience much better. Weaver said that RTA is excited to unveil a new project that will “enhance their travel experience.”
And if you look closely at the new signs, you’ll see a modern adaptation of an arrow drawn into the bus icon. So the arrow’s spirit lives on!
Riders with questions and concerns can get more information by calling RTA Customer Service at 951-565-5002 or visit www.riversidetransit.com. You may also send comments and queries by email to comments@riversidetransit.com.
The BusWatch App is available now for download on the App Store.

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