You Can’t Get from There to Here: Getting to Eastern Market on Saturday
I left the Transportation Justice meeting at St Matthews & St Joseph, with a lot to think about. I took some of those thoughts with me as my son and I made our bus trips mostly on the 4/15 buses. I still am finding service on the Woodward line to be unpredictable and uneven. Other buses are not arriving or departing on schedule, and it is awfully hard to make a connection, when there are not accurate schedules.
On Saturday, my son and I decided to make a visit to the Eastern Market and took the Woodward downtown to the Rosa Parks terminal, planning to take the Chene bus to Gratiot, then take the Gratiot back downtown.
The Chene bus was behind schedule when we arrived and its updated, projected arrival had come and gone, so we took the Lafayette/Van Dyke bus over to Greek Town and walked from there. This is not a walk I recommend for the elderly or disabled. We have become accustomed to long walks when the bus lines are far apart or the bus just doesn’t come.
There is not really service through the Eastern Market on weekends since the Russell bus which goes through the market area (from Gratiot to Mack) does not run on weekends. The Chene runs about once an hour, when it’s on schedule. The Mack lets you off about 4 long blocks from the Gratiot Central Market.
Pretty much the only bus service to the market is the Gratiot bus, since the Vernor route, which used to provide limited service from Southwest Detroit, to the East Side, including the Eastern Market, now ends at Rosa Parks.
Admin Note: Given that Eastern Market is only open on Saturdays and is one of Detroit’s great treasures–a hub of commerce, healthy food, and social activity (not to mention the oldest, continually running open-air market in the country)–wouldn’t it make sense for there to be designated public bus service between the neighborhoods where residents live and the market? There probably wouldn’t be a whole lot of demand for a Whole Foods downtown if we just supported the great venues for shopping and commerce that already exist in the city (by, for example, making it possible for people who live in the city without cars to get to these destinations).