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A C1 and Swift Express hybrid: Duke Parking and Transportation Services implements new bus route

Duke Parking and Transportation Services recently added a new C-Swift Shuttle route to its rotation, running every Saturday and Sunday from 4 p.m. to 12:26 a.m.

The new line follows a different path from both the C1—which cycles between East Campus and West Campus—and the Swift Express, which travels between West Campus and 300 Swift. Instead, the C-SWS drives directly from West Campus to East Campus, then passes Swift on the way back to the Chapel loop.

The C-SWS route “was established to create efficiencies in our services,” wrote Beth Campbell, information systems manager for PTS, in an email.

However, some students feel as though the opposite has occurred. Junior Caroline Dear feels that the implementation of the new line has made it more difficult to visit her friends in Swift.

Those who do not frequent Swift seem somewhat unaffected by the new route. First-year Eden Smith mentioned that the wait for the bus is quite lengthy, though it is still comparable to that of a typical C1. 

To Smith, the true problem is not the rate at which buses arrive on campus but the rate at which students can actually get on the buses. PTS utilizes two sizes of buses, one being nearly twice as long as the other. Smith believes that “there are certain parts of the day when Duke should only use the longer buses,” as this would allow more students to depart campus at a quicker rate, significantly reducing wait times.

Dear agrees that the current bus system could use a tweak. 

“Especially as someone who doesn’t live in Swift but stays late, it is frustrating that the Swift Express stops running early. It should at least run to the same time as the C1,” Dear said. “For people studying late on West, having to get a Duke Van or an Uber to go home is unnecessarily annoying.”

Both Dear and Smith were somewhat caught off guard by the new route. Smith initially realized that the C-SWS had been implemented after “going outside and seeing it go past.” Fortunately, both the PTS website and a mobile app show key information about routes, arrival times and real-time bus trackers.

“We urge all students to download the TransLoc app or visit the PTS website to see full route details,” Campbell wrote. “TransLoc is the best place to find service alerts when changes occur.”

Apart from the creation of the new route, it is unclear whether PTS will make any additional changes to the bus schedule. According to Campbell, route times are influenced by a number of components, ranging from library hours to dining schedules, so any adjustments would likely come as a result of a shift in larger campus-wide policy. 

Gautam Sirdeshmukh | Staff Reporter

Gautam Sirdeshmukh is a Trinity senior and a staff reporter for the news department. He was previously the health & science news editor of The Chronicle's 117th volume.


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