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CapMetro will let riders get off between stops at night and allow open strollers on buses

A red MetroBus saying 803 Westgate approaches the camera. A woman with long dark hair wearing a white shirt, skirt and handbag appears to be waiting for the bus to pull over. Behind her, a some rentable electric scooters line the sidewalk. People in the background are walking around in light clothing like shorts and t-shirts. A burnt orange street sign says "West 27th Street," indicating this is in the University of Texas area. Trees covered in leaves create a green backdrop.
Gabriel C. Pérez
Capital Metro is adopting a pair of new policies intended to make life a bit easier for bus riders.

After experimenting for weeks with letting people off between stops and allowing open strollers on buses, Capital Metro is making the pilot projects permanent.

Both policies come with a set of restrictions.

Riders can ask a driver to let them off between stops after 9 p.m. The driver will pull over for a so-called "courtesy stop" only if the weather is not severe and there's a safe, well-lit space to stop. The speed limit has to be under 50 miles an hour.

Before the pilot project launched in April, only people with mobility impairments could be let off between bus stops.

Adults can keep a child in a stroller only if a wheelchair spot is available. If someone boards in a wheelchair and needs the space, the parent must remove the child from the stroller and fold it up.

Bus drivers are not supposed to help with strollers, but they can lower the ramp for people to board more easily.

"We're a little bit ahead of the curve ... in trying this," CapMetro's operations chief Andy Skabowski told KUT. "We tried it, and it was very well received."

Both policies are in effect now, but Capital Metro won't start promoting them for a couple months. The agency wants to make sure all bus drivers and trainees understand the rules first.

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Nathan Bernier is the transportation reporter at KUT. He covers the big projects that are reshaping how we get around Austin, like the I-35 overhaul, the airport's rapid growth and the multibillion dollar transit expansion Project Connect. He also focuses on the daily changes that affect how we walk, bike and drive around the city. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @KUTnathan.
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