26: Union Station - Great Brook Valley via Lincoln St

May 30, 2022

The fourth and final way to get to the Lincoln Plaza is the 26. The 26, however, is the best way to get to Lincoln Plaza. I saved the best for last here.

The 26 follows the exact same routing as the 23 out of downtown Worcester to the Lincoln Plaza. The big difference with the 26 is that it is extended to Great Brook Valley (also served by the 31). Easiest way from downtown to Great Brook Valley, nice.

Scheduling is just like the 11. The 26 runs every 30 minutes between 5:45 am to 9:45 am, and then it's every 20 minutes or better until until 1 pm. Trips then leave at 1:45, 2:00, 2:45, 3:00, then have inconsistent 20 - 30 minute headways until 6:45 pm. Trips continue to be half hourly until 8:15 pm, where trips are hourly until 11:15 pm. It's a similar story inbound, where trips are every 30 minutes from 5:20 to 9:20 am, every 15 - 20 minutes until 1:35 pm, with the next trip at 2:20. Trips are then the inconsistent 20 - 35 minutes until 6:20, half hourly until 8:50, and then hourly until 10:50 pm. This route obviously has late night strengths, running until 11 pm (last trip outbound ends at 11:45!)

Weekends are far more evenly spaced out. On Saturdays, the route runs with 30 minute headways all day from 6:15 am to 8:45 pm in both directions. Sundays have uhh... 65 minute headways from 10 am to 4 pm. Yikes, not nearly as good as weekday and Saturday service.

Final thoughts - I really like it, easily the best way to reach Lincoln Plaza and the Great Brook Valley. The really good frequencies (at least for the WRTA) and late night hours (might be the latest bus route on the WRTA) make this an amazing route. Sunday service sucks though. The 26 makes the 23 seem redundant, considering that the 23 runs along the same route, but with the same headways and ending earlier in the evening. You could just eliminate the 23 and fully replace it with the 26 and 16 (see my thoughts on the 16). Eliminate the 23 and reroute the 16 up the 23's independent section, meeting back up with the current 31. Great Brook Valley is still served really good with the 26.

Lincoln Plaza... Lincoln... July 13.

Posted: May 31, 2022 21:04