Phase 2 of MCTS Next, the county’s plan to reimagine Milwaukee’s bus system, will launch on Sunday, June 6. With it, 11 bus routes will see major changes, including higher frequency and new stops.
This phase is a continuation of the MCTS Next program, which has been in development for over three years and implemented the first changes in March. The goal is to increase high frequency service and improve access to jobs, shops and services across the city for transit riders.
Here are the affected routes:
Route 11 – This is a new route that will replace service on West Hampton Avenue previously handled by Route 12. Buses will run from West Hampton Avenue to North 124th Street. Here’s a full list of stops for the route. For a video detailing the new route, click here.
Route 12 – Routing is being adjusted. The route is being expanded north to West Brown Deer Road, removing service on West Hampton Avenue. Service will also shift from Wisconsin Avenue to Wells Street between North Sixth and North 12th streets. Some stops are being removed on this route. For a video breakdown, click here.
Route 34 – This is a new route that will replace Route 80’s service on North Hopkins Street. It will run from North 5th and West Clybourn streets to North 92nd and West Grantosa Drive. Buses will run every 25 to 30 minutes on this route. Here’s a full list of stops for the route. For a video breakdown, click here.
Route 58 – This is a new route that will replace Route 80’s service on Villard Avenue. It will run from North Green Bay and West Hampton avenues to North Lovers Lane Road and West Silver Spring Drive. Here’s a full list of stops for the route. For a video breakdown, click here.
Route 80 – This route will expand north to East Locust Street to provide high frequency service. Routing has been adjusted and replaced by other routes, and some stops are being removed. For a video breakdown, click here.
‘Opening up a whole new world’
Matt Sliker, a spokesman for the Milwaukee County Transit System, said the changes will help save time and connect people to new areas. Route 88, for example, will bring service to an area that had previously been inaccessible by bus with a Woodman’s grocery store and an Aldi grocery store.
“If there’s no bus routes, people are landlocked in,” Sliker said. “We’re opening up a whole new world here.”
Sliker said the changes will make 60% of bus routes high frequency, an increase of about 20% from previous years. Ridership has also increased since the first changes were implemented, Slicker said.
David Salmon, a member of the Milwaukee Transit Riders Union, called the increased frequency changes a “big win” for transit riders, though he wants to see more.
“I would like to see it be more ambitious,” Salmon said. “It’s still an improvement on where the system has been.”
For more information
To find out more, visit this link. If you have questions, call the MCTS Next Hotline at (414) 344-6711 or MCTS customer service desk at (414) 937-3218 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday.
There will be an online informational session at noon Tuesday, June 2.