After the discontinuation of the shuttle that ran from USC to LA Live, the University Residential Student Community Advocacy Board is petitioning LA Live owner Anschutz Entertainment Group to reinstate the shuttle, arguing that it would be beneficial for USC students and business at LA Live.
The URSC Advocacy Board, a branch of the University Residential Student Community that is dedicated to improving life at USC by supporting new ideas and campaigning for change, created a survey for students to prove that they would use the free shuttle, if it were reinstated.
USC Transportation Director Tony Mazza said the university discontinued the shuttle after AEG ceased its funding, believing that the newly constructed Expo Rail would replace it.
AEG could not be reached for comment.
Rick Yang, a member of the Advocacy Board who is promoting the survey, said this is not the case. Yang argued that the rail is not a good alternative to the shuttle because it is much less convenient, and students overall prefer the shuttle.
In the more than 750 responses gathered by the survey, an overwhelming 95 percent of students said that they want the shuttle back, some even requesting that the shuttle’s running time be extended until 3 a.m.
According to Yang, the survey results demonstrate that students see a need for the shuttle.
“The survey results are pretty clear that students want the shuttle back,” Yang said. “One of the questions on our survey was: How often would you go to LA Live if they brought back the shuttle? The results showed that a majority of students said if the shuttle was available, they would go one to three times a month.”
Liz Friedman, a freshman majoring in global business, agreed that students would be more inclined to visit LA Live if free shuttle service was available.
“Because I don’t have a car at school, it’s really hard to get off campus to go out to eat or to the movies,” Friedman said. “I wish they hadn’t taken the shuttle away this year, because I definitely would use it to go over there with my friends once in a while.
Mazza explained that USC cannot fund the shuttle on its own, but brought up multiple alternatives to the shuttle.
“Currently, our budget in Transportation cannot support the cost of continuing the shuttle,” Mazza said. “However, the campus community can use the Expo Rail, DASH, Zipcars, carpools with other students, or their personal vehicles to visit LA Live.”
Regardless of some of the negative feedback, Yang and the URSC Advocacy Board are determined to do as much as they can to ensure the shuttle’s reinstatement.
“We’re hoping that the survey will convince the officials who run LA Live that USC students would appreciate bringing back the shuttle,” Yang said. “It’d be mutually beneficial — they would make money from ’SC students, and we’d have a more direct path to the area.”