Oh yes, here we are on the craziest route of the BAT (barring the 12). The 4 could honestly pass for an MBTA route based on its crowds!
|Here we go!|
I purposely got the 4 in the inbound direction so I would have to take it around its loop from Westgate. First, we looped around to serve Sears, then we used Campanelli Industrial Drive to get to Oak Street. It was mostly housing developments, but there were some suburban businesses with parking lots as we turned onto Pearl Street.
|824! They want their address to be known.|
Before we could continue, though, we had to loop around into the Good Samaritan Medical Center. And once that was done, we had to do that same section on Oak Street and Pearl Street again. Why couldn’t we have just entered the deviation the other way? Who knows? So finally back on Pearl, it was houses on one side and a cemetery on the other.
We turned onto Pleasant Street next, going over Route 24 and passing mostly suburban houses, although there were a few businesses sprinkled in at various points. The further we went down Pleasant Street, the closer the houses got to each other and the more frequent the retail showed up. Finally, we turned onto Warren Ave, then Legion Parkway, which became Centre Street. This led us to the BAT Centre.
|Some of the dense houses.|
BAT Route: Brockton Route 4 (Westgate Mall via Pleasant)
Ridership: In 2014, the 4 got about 1,090 passengers per weekday, 700 per Saturday, and 390 per Sunday. However, based on the ridership I saw on the route (30 people on the one-way trip, enough to require that people stand), I think the patronage for this route has gone up. After all, the route was experiencing positive trends before 2014, so why not stop there?
Pros: Going outbound, at least, this is the fastest and most direct connection to the Westgate Mall. It runs with the classic BAT schedule, which may actually be too infrequent, but we’ll get to that.
Cons: First, I’ll just address the potential confusion with fares: on the 4, you pay when you get on in both directions, even though that contradicts the typical BAT mentality of paying when you get off going outbound. No idea why that happens, but that’s what happens. Also, I guess I understand why the route does its big loop going inbound, but it’s definitely not conducive to a fast trip from the Westgate Mall to the Bat Centre. Finally, I wonder if this route is actually too busy for the pulse schedule. Seriously, instead of every 50 minutes on weekday middays, I feel like an extra bus could be added for 25 minute headways!
Nearby and Noteworthy: Really just the Westgate Mall, and that’s what most people use this route for.
Final Verdict: 7/10
Despite my trepidations with the loop and the crowding, this is still just a normal BAT route. It just happens to be busier than some of the other ones.
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I sent in a guest post of Framingham, when's it going up?