People, Let Me Tell You About My Best Friend… PARTA

By Daisha Overstreet

If you’re lazy like me, you probably hate walking around campus, especially in the Kent weather that has definitely overstayed its welcome. Although we have to suck it up and deal with it, there is a solution. I suggest taking advantage of the transportation system to get around. PARTA, the Kent State bus service, offers routes to several locations on and off campus, but that still has its problems.

Walking to and from several places might seem easier because of PARTA’s confusing schedule and figuring out which bus goes where. Now, if you want to take a trip off campus, I suggest you call (330)–672–7433 because the schedule and bus locations confuse me as well.

This is the official PARTA bus service phone number; the phone operators can answer any question you have concerning their service. I still call this number every time I make a Walmart trip.

While I think PARTA is confusing, I appreciate the Campus Loop bus, especially on those ice-cold days. I’ve taken advantage of this bus service all too often.

For those who do not know, Campus Loop is a bus that makes several stops around campus. If timed correctly, you can hop on the 51 and cut your distance by 5 to 10 minutes. This is the only bus service offered that I completely understand. This is because the busses that go off campus never seem to arrive on the time it states on the paper schedule. I’ve yet to master the ability to time the off campus routes.

The bus starts its route at 6 a.m. and ends at 11 p.m. Starting from the student center, it stops at Satterfield, Bowman, McGilvery, Franklin, Cartwright and White Halls. Then Campus Loop makes its way to C-Midway, New Front, the Music and Speech building, Centennial E & F and University Oaks. After, it moves to Tri- Towers, Korb, the University Health Center and the Ice Arena. Lastly, after making one stop to the Student Wellness Center, Campus Loop comes back to the student center. Although the website mentions that the bus comes to each location every 6 to 12 minutes, this is not true. Instead, it’s every 15 minutes.

But watch out! There are several other bus routes that tour the campus as well. Allerton (55), Stadium/Summit East (58/59), Front Campus/Loop Road (53/54) and the Stadium Loop (57) all follow some of the footsteps (or tire tracks) of Campus Loop. For instance, the bus that goes to the stadium (Stadium/Summit East) follows the exact route as Campus Loop, only making an extra stop to the stadium parking lot. Front Campus, so I thought, would take the same route as Campus Loop, but in my experience, it skips a vital location.

I attempted to take advantage of Campus Loop one morning when I was running late for class. Since I woke up at the same time my Multimedia Newswriting class started (11 a.m.), my only option was to take the bus in order to arrive at a decent time. But guess what? Campus Loop was out of service. Awesome. Arriving over the winter horizon, the Front Campus bus pulled up to the KIVA, and my day was saved, or so I thought. Apparently the bus only considers C-Midway to be Front Campus. Cool.

Now I may be wrong, but I definitely thought Franklin Hall was part of Front Campus. As the bus passed Van Deusen Hall and the parking lot in front of Cartwright, I gazed in the direction of Franklin with such a depressed look. To really stress how depressed I was, think of the ASPCA commercial that always ruin your day while you’re channel surfing. Thank you Front Campus bus for making me awkwardly turn heads as I entered class almost an hour late.

Although I want to emphasize how much you shouldn’t take the Front Campus bus if you want to go to Franklin Hall, that is not the message I want you to take from this. The PARTA service is indeed mystifying, but the schedule can be easily mastered through experience and by checking the schedule at the bus stop right outside of the KIVA. Campus Loop has helped me get to class, meetings and events on time. Even when I’m not running late, Campus Loop has always been there for me when my feet didn’t want to cooperate. We may pass each other sometimes, but it’s always (well mostly) there when I need it.

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