The Loyola Shuttle: Is It Worth It?

One of the great joys of being a student Loyola University of Chicago is the ability to travel from one campus onto another. Many Loyola students travel from the Lakeshore campus to the Water tower campus on a regular or daily basis. However, that so called carefree and effortless commute is far from what Loyola advertises. Many Loyola students are upset with the current performance of the shuttle, complaining about the long lines and over packed buses.

“I need to have at least an hour for travel time and even then, I risk being late,” said sophomore, Miranda Betancourt. “It’s a really big struggle trying to guess when the buses are going to be there.”

Reasonably during rush hours and frequent travel times, the shuttle is more congested and packed. But students still continue to complain about the lack of reliability even during less busy times.

“It’s always busy,” said Ryan Odom, Loyola junior. “No matter the time of the day, it always seems like I’m waiting or am late.”

To try and fix some of these issues the office of transportation at Loyola just last year emplaced a new tracking system for students so that they’re able to plan according to the buses schedule. But, the practically it of this system was too good to be true according to students. Many were still faced with delayed arrivals and invalid estimated times throughout the day.

“I’ve stopped using it,” said Betancourt. “There’s no point, it’s always wrong.”

Attempt after attempt the transportation office has tried to combat these issues, however, many of their resolutions have failed. So, just recently to try and fix this issue again, Loyola’s transportation office emplaced smaller shuttle buses. These buses were meant to help with the long wait lines and overly packed buses, but these buses have seemed to fix nothing in the eyes of Loyola students.

“They simply need more” said Odom. “They need more big buses, and more drivers. Loyola has so many resources, but I don’t seem them uses those efforts enough or efficiently. All of this can be fixed if they just had more drivers and buses.”

The frustration and pure disappointment can be seen within the students as they wait in the cold or immensely crowded waiting rooms.

“I know that there won’t be a bus every five minutes, but there needs to be a better system,” said sophomore, Sasha Fiscel. “There have been so many times when a bus parks by the drop off area but won’t drive up to the pick area for up to 40 minutes. It’s ridiculous, I understand that the drivers need to their paperwork and stuff, but for 40 minutes? There must be a better way.”

When asked, Loyola bus drivers were unable to comment on any questions regarding their system and services due to a new communication policy from the University. Loyola university just recently began redirecting any questions or interviews to one individual on their communications department as a way to control and organize their public persona. The drivers, as a result, constantly redirected to their transportation office or communications office.

However, after multiple attempts to reach out to the Loyola transportation office and only being directed to the communications department, who as well was incorporative with answering questions, I was only left with unanswered emails and dismissed interviews. As a result, there was no official comment from Loyola’s transportation officials or communication office about the inconstant and unreliable shuttle service according to students.

“I’m just frustrated,” said Fiscel. “I feel like they just don’t care about us or the problems.”