Commuters struggle with public transportation


Kloe Witt

St. Charles streetcar prepares for people to board near Loyola’s campus.

Nadir Benslimane, Staff Writer

Public transportation in New Orleans has been running behind when it comes to suiting commuter students’ needs.

Loyola commuter students and some members of the Commuter Student Association gave their thoughts on the current state of public transportation and how it has affected them. Several commuters found that the options for public transportation were too few and the bare minimum needed to work with.

Sebastian Walser, first-year pre-health major, said, “a lot of people struggle with traffic and (are) catching rides with parents or roommates to make it.”

Biology junior Gillian Decosseas and Emily Dieu, a psychology junior, agreed with Walser. They said they felt that public transportation has the potential to be unsafe, considering the possibility of unwanted encounters with strangers. These concerns are not completely unfounded either as there was a carjacking attempt of an RTA bus in July 2022, along with a recent attempted kidnapping of a New Orleans teen from a rideshare driver in September 2022.

Jacob Roy, a third year computer science major and member of the Commuter Student Association noted that because of New Orleans’ high crime rate, many students feel unsafe using public transportation.

Garado Colon, a computer science senior, commented that inconsistent public transportation incentivized them to use cars or Uber in order to get to class on time. This is cause for concern as inconsistent public transportation makes coming and going to campus more difficult, especially for those without a car. A few commuters brought up their own ideas on ways to address this difficulty.

“Streetcars, bikes, and buses are options, but only for people who are in close proximity to the school,” Roy said,” adding “students who live farther away don’t really have that option. There should be some type of shuttle that goes to those places that are farther from the school, and I’d think that would be better.”

Walser added that it would also be nice if Loyola helped out more with transportation by creating a carpool system among students.

Colon added that the apps and websites containing public transportation schedules and stops are both unreliable and hard to navigate with inaccurate arrival times to campus. Commuters felt that their comments should be taken seriously by the school and added that the safety and success of all students should be one of the highest priorities for Loyola as a university.