6: Union Station - West Tatnuck via Chandler St

June 1, 2022

Back when I started the daily posts about the WRTA with the 3, I mentioned that the 6 was the other way to reach Worcester State University. Well, the 6 isn't much better than the 3.

The 6's main advantage over the 3 is the routing. The 6 runs on Chandler Street for the entire route, along with the section downtown to reach Union Station, passing by City Hall. Part of the route runs alongside the 7. Unlike the 3, the route continues down Chandler Street until Tatnuck Square, where the route meets the 2 running along Pleasant Street. East of Worcester State, there are only a few areas where only the 6 serves, so west of Worcester State is the route's main independent section.

Looking at the schedule, you're better off with the 3 if coming from or going to the shared section of Chandler Street where both the 3 and 6 serve. The 6 has hourly freuqencies (compared to the 3's 40 - 60 minute headways) between 6 am and 9 pm on weekdays (the 3 is 5 am to 8:30 pm). Saturday service is better with the 6, however, with hourly service between 9 am and 5 pm, with extra trips added in at 7 am and 7 pm (what happened to the 8 am and 6 pm trips, I don't know).

One of the advantages of even headways (such as every hour) is that routes can start at even times. The 6 takes advantage of this outbound, with trips leaving Union Station on the hour, every hour it runs, on both weekdays and Saturdays. The 6 takes 24 - 25 minutes to go from one end to the other, so when does the inbound trip leave Tatnuck Square? At 28 minutes past the hour. Come on, can't you just make the route leave at a nice and even 30 minutes past? The route looks like it is doable with only one bus running the route at a time, and there's currently 7 minutes of layover at Union Station between trips.

Final thoughts - The 6's strongest section is definitely west of Worcester State University towards Tatnuck Square. The route gives people on and near Chandler Street an easier journey to... wherever the 2 goes. Compared to the 3, it's a tossup for which one is better. It fully depends on when you travel and where you are going. The difference between the 3's and the 6's freuquencies means that buses could be 5 minutes apart or 45 minutes apart.

Posted: Jun 1, 2022 21:23