Akron: Welcome to Your New Network

New network in the core of Akron. Red = every 15 min, dark blue = every 30 min, light blue = every 60 min.

by Evan Landman

Akron METRO launched their reimagined bus network on June 4th!  Jarrett Walker + Associates assisted the agency in developing the new service plan over the past 2 years.

You can download the full map here.  On this page there’s also a side-by-side trip planner showing how any trip is made differently in the new network than the old one.

Despite dealing with the same operator shortage as all transit agencies have faced, METRO were able to implement nearly the entire service plan on Day 1, which included the following key elements:

  • 5 new high-frequency 15-minute corridors.
  • 3 new 30-minute routes in addition to 5 existing 30-min routes
  • New regional connections to greater Cleveland (which also implemented a JWA network redesign last year.)
  • Expanded weekend services, particularly on Sundays.

Old network for the same area. Red = every 15 minutes, purple = every 20 minutes, dark blue = every 30 minutes, light blue = every 60 min. Pale orange lines were less frequent than every hour.

Before the new network was implemented, METRO’s most frequent routes ran only every 20 minutes. The new network establishes frequent service to many key destinations and neighborhoods, including major hospitals, the University of Akron, and other important civic institutions. The Reimagined Network was designed to provide frequent and convenient service in busy places where many people need to travel to, while continuing to offer lifeline services in places where and for people for whom transit is essential.

With the new network, the median person in Summit County who lives near a bus route can access over 54% more jobs with a 45 minute transit trip; these outcomes are even larger for lower-income people and people of color, who are more likely to live in central Akron, where the new network’s most frequent routes are concentrated. This was achieved without a reduction in coverage – about 1% more people are now within a short walk to a transit than with the old network.

JWA congratulates METRO on the successful implementation of this plan. We’re proud to have assisted the agency in developing a new bus network that responds to the travel needs of today’s riders, and establishes the foundation for ridership growth in the future.


One Response to Akron: Welcome to Your New Network

  1. Johnny June 23, 2023 at 4:00 am #

    Very great map design, like all maps from JWA. I especially like that it’s geographically correct which make it much easier to understand where each route goes.

    Unfortunately the 6/19 corridor have a very bad schedule in the inbound direction. During most of the day the buses arrive almost simultaneously. It is completely unacceptable that you advertise this as “every 15 minutes” when you have what effectively is a 30-minute service in one of the directions.