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Riders ding Muni over long waits, construction in latest survey

Overall Muni rider satisfaction slipped this year after passengers this summer faced long waits at bus stops citywide due to infrequent service caused by the partial closure of the subway and an operator shortage.

The 2018 rider survey, complied by Corey, Canapary & Galanis Research through phone interviews in Chinese, English and Spanish, showed 63 percent of Muni riders surveyed rated Muni service as either “Excellent” or “Good.” Over the last two years, that number had been at 70 percent.

A total of 609 people took the survey from June 26 to August 12, which was the same time the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency closed the Twin Peaks Tunnel to perform seismic and other infrastructure upgrades inside the 100-year old tunnel.

The SFMTA provided bus shuttles on the L-Taraval, M-Ocean View and ran a Forest Hill shuttle bus service during the summer closure of the tunnel.

Transit officials pulled operators from other bus lines to operate the bus shuttles causing infrequent service on many bus lines, including on the 38-Geary which missed about 4,000 hours of service, a Budget and Legislative Analyst report said.

On top of taking operators from other bus lines to operate the shuttle buses, some operators were training on the new Muni trains and other new technology at the time, leaving bus runs open with no operators available.

In the survey, one in four riders said they would like see more frequent service, and one in five said they would like to see better on-time performance.

Additionally, 44 percent of riders said they would take a ride hailing app such as Uber and Lyft if Muni were not available for their trip.

The SFMTA Board of Directors will review this year’s rider survey next Tuesday at its regular board meeting at City Hall.

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