From the Forum – Changes to the #63 bus?

Photo by PoPville flickr user washingtonydc

Changes to the #63 bus?

“1. Does anybody else ride the #63 between the GA Ave Metro and downtown?
2. Have you noticed that it’s way more crowded and moves more slowly than it previously has?

This bus was a godsend – a metro bus that moved quickly downtown and in which 60% of the riders offloaded before I boarded. Now it’s yet another standing-room-only bus that takes 45 minutes to go 2.5 miles. I figured kids going back to school would slow things a bit, but I don’t recall the bus being as crowded back in the springtime. Was there some change to another nearby route that’s resulted in new riders on the #63? Maybe people are shifting their transit choices from metro to the bus?”

You can see all forum topics and add your own here. If you are having trouble uploading your question please email me at princeofpetworth(at)gmail Please Note this is NOT an events calendar.

25 Comment

  • I take this from Missouri ave. all the way to the end regularly. My response is actually the opposite. The reason I take it over 70 on Georgia is because it’s usually dead or very sparse. My bigger gripe is the fact it only runs till 7ish all week. If this line had the same hours as the 63, THAT would be a godsend. For me at least.

  • I used to take the 63 all the time. My guess is that people who would normally take Metro from either Takoma or Georgia Ave/Petworth are busing it instead. FWIW, I live just above Missouri and it would take me just as long to get downtown via the 63 as it would to take the 63 North to Takoma and then take the Red Line in. I’ll echo that it’s a million times better than the 70 too. The 70 is just crazy at times.

  • Not sure on bus situation, but serious question: why not walk 2.5 miles in the same amount of time or less?

    • some people have disabilities, sometimes its raining, some people don’t like walking. I walk to work but I would never expect anyone else to, especially not 2.5 miles.

      • To add to that have you ever been on the bus? Tt seems like there is a stop every 30 feet and feels like people ring it at every stop it. No way most of them are walking half a mile never mind 2.5. For example I actually took the 63 from U st up to Taylor and a dude jumped on the bus at Ga. Ave metro, pulled the string immediately on the way in and got off at Safeway one stop later. No more than 100 yards away. No mobility issues and it was not raining at the time. Some people are just lazy.

        • Between the people who must be asked, repeatedly, to move to the back of the bus, and this specific issue, I am constantly amazed that Metrobus is not cited as a direct cause high blood pressure or insanity.

          • Right?! The only reason I love the bus is because I commute early, and get on the bus at the first stop in the evening to get a window seat right across from the back door. Otherwise I’d go crazy.

        • I’m kind of surprised someone would take the bus for that short of a distance, but is it really fair to call the guy “lazy”? Maybe he was running late for something and needed those few minutes.
          I once took my cat (in her carrier) one stop on the bus — I’d already walked partway, but when a bus came by, I hopped on it for two blocks. My cat does not like being away from home and was mewing piteously, so I figured it would be worth it to get her home that much faster.

    • Some people have mobility issues. Some people travel with children. Some people just choose to sit on their asses for 45 minutes rather than walk.

  • I’ve heard the overcrowding is due to the school kids now being able to ride the DC busses for free, and the 63 route goes by 4+ schools. This is a new-ish DC gov reg. It makes me a bit nervous about the proposed changes to both the 63 and 64 bus lines, which did not take into account the new ridership increases. I’ve been to the WMATA open houses for these proposed changes, and unless they choose to option to increase the # of busses (doubtful $), things will get worse.

    I take it from Allison all the way downtown, and it was a great alternative to the oft overcrowded, stop skipping and sparse 64 line. You used to always be able to get a spot on the 63. Now I stress over which one is the lesser of 2 evils.

    • Kids have been able to ride Metro Bus for free since at least last year (and really, the year before that I only ever had one bus driver ask me to pay for my oldest). What’s new this year is the allowance to ride Metro trains and to use the buses on weekdays.

    • Blithe

      I thought that kids could already ride the buses for free — and that the recent change was to allow kids to ride free on the Metro as well. It’s possible, of course, that this change has contributed to more kids on the buses as well, as kids transfer to/from the Metro.

  • I used to take the 63 from Takoma to Mass and back every day. Now I get a ride with my husband to the metro. The bus has always been overcrowded and slow, typically standing-room only by the time it hits Sherman Circle. I would only get a seat because I’m at the northern end of the route. School kids are part of the problem, but plenty of professionals ride and stand every day. We need more buses on the route and better spacing between buses. Rush hour complicates things, but it’s also a completely predictable problem that should theoretically be completely manageable to handle. Theoretically.

    • This is exactly why I take the bus. I know what to expect on the day to day. Metro is a (almost literal) crapshoot. My name is Brightwoodess and I’ve been clean from Metro for 3 months now and couldn’t be happier!

  • More condos and more new people in the neighborhoods = more congestion. When I moved into North Petworth 5 years ago, there were available seats, even on the crazy 70/79. Not anymore. There are more cars & bicyclists that the buses have to go around and cruise behind at 5 mph, too. The slow rides are the new normal.

  • Separate bus-line, but the 50 series on 14th St has likewise gotten significantly worse recently (and it was never that optimal). It’s standard for 3-4 buses in a row to have to skip stops less than 1/3 of the way through their route. With overcrowding, loading/unloading takes forever, and a half mile ride can take over 30 minutes at peak times. I saw a shoving match break out amongst riders trying to get on a packed bus the other day. School kids make up part of the increase for sure, but I actually worry about them a lot – many of them end up being late every day due to the bus situation (even with reasonable cushions of time). More frequent and higher capacity buses – and an express line! – would make big difference. Also unicorns, for all the likelihood.

  • Oh yes. It starts at Takoma metro. They have reduced the number of buses. The worst part is that NextBus will say there is one coming, the expected time passes, and then you are waiting an

  • They recently added another bus during morning rush hour to help. I actually think it’s better than it was last year at this time. Also, to avoid Metro, I’ve started riding it everyday now instead of just every so often. So perhaps there are others like me who’ve joined in on the fun. However, I don’t see much of a change from fall 2014, with the exception of it seemingly being a tad bit better. It takes me 45 minutes from Northern Brightwood to get to Metro Center, which is more than 5 miles. I don’t know what slow a– bus you keep catching!

  • School being back in session and people coming back from summer vacations definitely play into it, though I’ve only been riding the 63 for about 7 months, so I don’t have a good sense of changes over time. In addition to that added bus, though, WMATA is considering line changes to the 63/64 when they run together south of the Metro, letting them actually run together (they’re currently 1-2 blocks apart the entire way, forcing people to choose to wait at one stop or the other). This is a HUGE improvement for people in Park View and points south, but it should also generally improve speeds on the line letting everyone benefit.

  • Sadly, WMATA is only planning to slow this route down more. They want to move the 63 to move down 11th which their own data shows runs even more behind schedule during rush hour. Their whole plan makes no sense per a prior POP post:

Comments are closed.