Followers of my profile (all 2 of you) may have just noticed an edit go live about 600 miles away from where I normally edit. This isn’t armchair mapping; I went over to Manchester to see my long-distance boyfriend but knew in advance that he didn’t have the week off so I brought the maps along to occupy myself during his shifts.
I managed to ride all fifteen of MTA’s routes in three days; fourteen of these being while he was working and one while he was asleep.
MTA is different from SMART in a few ways:
- Posted bus stops are kinda just… suggestions. Except for three of the routes, passengers can just wave the bus down anywhere along the fixed route to get on, and request a stop anywhere from the driver.
- Trips after 6:30 don’t even make you get off on the official route. The last three 5s and 11s run what’s called “deviated fixed route”, which means the bus will deviate from the fixed route to drop you off - up to 3/4 of a mile is what the driver I actually did it with said.
- All the drivers go everywhere. The bus you catch from the Mall of NH may just continue on to SNHU, if you catch it at the right time.
- The buses can hold for each other. If you’re on a late bus trying to catch another, just ask the driver, and they’ll radio in for the next bus to wait, if they’re not that next bus themselves.
- From Downtown to the outer end, and back, is considered a single trip.
- Colby Court Senior Center is by request only. The same applies to Elliot at River’s Edge for the 3 and inbound 12 - though it has regularly-scheduled service on the outbound 12.
Because of point 1, there are actually long stretches without any posted stops. Route 4 doesn’t have any. The map I’ve uploaded consists of:
- Any stop with a physical MTA or Green DASH sign
- Any location on the route with a shelter
- Any timepoint in the schedule
Because of point 5, there will be some
route_master relations with only one child
route relation, and the route relations won’t follow the
## (dir): from => to name format.
Because of point 6, I didn’t see the area around Colby Court Senior Center and may be missing stops.
Also, when I rode the 11, the driver skipped Garden Drive, saying it wasn’t on the directions she’d been given. So I missed stops there too.
Actual route relations are coming soon(tm)!