News bits: UTA student makes the case for public transportation

TRELRTBoardingUnionStation

A commute with three transfers including two buses, light rail and commuter rail may appear daunting for the most seasoned public transportation user, but for University of Texas at Arlington student Brian Duran-Fuentes, it’s just a part of his day.

Duran-Fuentes commutes from Dallas to Arlington everyday using DART’s 164 bus, light rail, the Trinity Railway Express and finally the Metro Arlington Xpress bus.

In a column written for UTA’s student newspaper The Shorthorn, Duran-Fuentes outlines his commute and the benefits he finds commuting for a total of four hours every day.

I say it’s almost always time well spent. Being an English major, I have a lot of assigned readings, and I can always hit the books on the go. Since the TRE and the MAX offer WiFi, I can work and turn in assignments on Blackboard. The TRE even has desks and electrical outlets to charge up any electronic device I might need.

Interestingly, public transportation to and from UTA offers an overlooked benefit: a social experience. I was surprised to realize that some of the acquaintances and friendships I made during my first semester at college were people that I met waiting for the bus or train.

Duran-Fuentes, who benefits from having access to a discounted student pass, also speaks positively of the exposure he receives on public transportation. It’s too easy to become confined in a social circle, he writes, and public transportation exposes him to radically different perspectives.

Thanks for your dedication, Duran-Fuentes!

Column: Public transportation is worth the time spent [The Shorthorn]

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