“Where’d You Come From Where’d You Go?” Exploring Campus Transit.

When this project was started, I was working with a partner, with the expectation that we would not only provide a comprehensive, guide to transport in the UMBC area, that we’d also create a zine, as well as create a student event, and then use it as an opportunity to explore the history of transit in the area, and the future of transit in the DC/Maryland Virginia area. Transit is important to activism, because the access to transit means more access to opportunities and access to resources, and having access for those resources, allows more people to have a better chance at improving their lives, and the ability to be more equal.

Now, as I write this blogpost alone, how much of that was completed? Not much to be quite honest.

In fact, even after scaling back the project, and despite gathering a vast swath of research, I haven’t even reached the zine stage, or figured out how to conduct a student event in relation to transit. However, it’s amazing that even this much was completed, even with a partner dropping out, family medical issues at home, and working full time. Despite all of these setbacks, a large amount of data was produced, and I feel that in the spirit of this activism project, I will put as much of the data as possible here for you.

There is potential that lies here. With this data, and some more time next semester, I would like to finally publish the Transit Zine, and hand them out in the breezeway, to new students, transfer students and staff alike.

If anything, this project wasn’t a complete loss. In fact, it taught me a lot about how activism works, and the sheer amount of work that goes into a single movement, let alone trying to put a concept into motion. Just trying to scale up, or scale down the project, required a massive amount of planning. And considering how large in scale the project was, trying to do it alone was a massive undertaking, and thus, collaboration becomes just as important here. In a way, there was some empathy that I could feel, for activists of the past who have created change. How could they have possibly have done all that they’ve done, with all the balance and the risks that they carried upon their shoulders. I had to balance work, family and school, and I had far more free time than them, and I could barely get anything off the ground. Many activists in the past were literally fighting with their lives, and some of them still failed at the time anyway, how can one do it? This leads into another thought, is that activism takes time. It seems obvious, yes, but this whole experience made me recognize that, in the end, you could put your whole self into a project, but results will not be instantaneous.

In the end, if I could travel back in time, I believe that I would’ve approached this project in a far different way, than what was conducted. First, I would’ve put more time into planning and executing the goals. Then, I would’ve spent time in contact with stakeholders, and other groups that might benefit from increased transit access or awareness. I would’ve also set aside time to talk to professors and instructors, on how to book spaces, and then, planned this whole project as a multi-stage, multi-semester undertaking. This would’ve prevented so much stress, and a lot of preventable errors in research and activism.

The least I can do, at this point, is to show you my data, that will be included in the zine, and the potential future student event.

UMBC TRANSIT OPTIONS

ZipCar UMBC:

ZipCar UMBC is a car rental service available to UMBC students, Faculty and Staff.

This is an on-demand service in which one applies for a membership, gets approval, and can rent a car by the hour for a period of time decided by the user, and returned to a spot on campus when the rental period is over (Gas and Insurance Included):

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https://www.zipcar.com/universities/university-of-maryland-baltimore-county

MTA BUS SYSTEM

This is an extensive system that connects the campus of UMBC to the greater Baltimore area. Three major routes, #37, #76, and CityLink Yellow connect directly to UMBC’s campus. Passes can be bought at the MTA Pass Store (https://www.mta.maryland.gov/pass-store)

Full City Route Map here: https://s3.amazonaws.com/mta-website-staging/mta-website-staging/files/System%20Maps/Abstract_System_Map_02_2019.pdf

All Bus Schedules Located Here: https://www.mta.maryland.gov/schedule

MARC Rail System

The MARC Penn and Camden Lines both stop near UMBC, with the Camden line terminating near Baltimore Camden Yards, and the Penn line terminating in Baltimore’s Penn Station. Both lines also terminate southbound at Washington DC’s Union Station. Passes for the MARC can be bought at (https://www.mta.maryland.gov/pass-store)

Penn Line (Nearest Station is Halethorpe):

Camden Line (Nearest Station is St. Denis):

UMBC Transit

These are seven routes that are run by UMBC that are meant to take students to various places in the immediate vicinity of UMBC. For UMBC students, Payment is not required, only a visual confirmation via the use of a student’s ID card.

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Map of the UMBC Transit System

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Buses are scheduled between every half hour, to every 15 minutes, based on route.

In the future this, as well as more extensive individual stop information, as well as connections, will be put in the zine.

 

 

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