You get to the bus stop, only to see a hot mess of people already filed in line, ready to board like a human flood, and you simply know it's going to take a full three minutes to get everyone boarded.
Or your unlucky enough to already be on the bus and spy an incoming deluge of passengers. Obviously you're running late, and your anxiety reaches new heights when you realize the bus will definitely get caught in the next red light simply due of the time it will take for all the new bus riders at the next stop to get on.
To alleviate the stress created by both (and any similar) situations, and to improve efficiency in general, the STM is launching a pilot project that will allow riders to get on the bus through the back/middle door, reports Métro.
As is already common practice in San Francisco, the back-door-boarding will only be tested on one STM bus line. 121 Sauvé/Côte-vertu will serve as the guinea pig in the pilot project going into action next spring, as it's a high traffic route that stands to benefit most from the decreased downtime that will result in the new practice.
According to researchers at McGill University who delved into the benefits of back door bus boarding, by allowing riders to get on through both doors of the amount of idle time experienced on a bus route could drop by 13%.
An obvious roadblock in this plan, however, is the method in which the STM will ensure riders are actually paying for the bus when not having to pass by the card/ticket reader at the front.
For better or worse, the STM plans to use the honour system. Only OPUS card holders will be encouraged to use the back door, with random spot checks occurring to ensure everyone is being honest.
But since the pilot project is only going to last several months, the STM isn't crazy scared about losing money on fares. That probably won't stop the STM from handing out fines for fare evasions, though. Lets not forget they handed out a record breaking amount of fare evasion tickets in 2015.