Deciding where bus routes should go isn't an easy job.
"Arturo Herrera Jr. has a decision to make: Should a new bus route planned for Stone Oak run along Loop 1604 or Sonterra Boulevard?
The route must pass near North Central Baptist Hospital off Stone Oak Parkway and a hospital under construction on Hardy Oak Boulevard because "hospitals are huge trip generators," said Herrera, a transportation service planner for Via Metropolitan Transit.
But cost is also a key factor. Each extra minute of travel time - because of traffic or route length - adds to what the bus service will pay in salaries, bus maintenance and fuel.
"We're trying to find the fastest way to get up there while hitting all the major points of interests for customers," said Keith Hom, VIA's vice president of operational planning."