Tag Archives: gserotary5400

Tandil Argentina Public Transit Observations-Brooke

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Photo #1 & 2
Route map of the service in Tandil
Photo #3
The buses are color coordinated, this has not changed in over 10 years.
Photo #4
This photo was advertising a public demonstration of the change in fare.
Photo #5, 6, 7, 8
Additional photos of the the students opinion regarding the transit and the governments role and list of changes the students want to see.

My recent vocation visit in Tandil allowed for me a one-on-one opportunity with their Director of Transportation. The Director was gracious to spend the morning answering my plethora of questions regarding their transportation system. The system in Tandil, looking at the map, came close to almost covering the whole community with some sort of transportation. Which I found interesting considering it’s size. Comparable to other communities we visited Tandil was doing a pretty good job with the amount of services available to the community.

Interesting notes about Tandil’s transportation system:

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Tandil has not changed it’s system in over 10 years, they can add to their system 2 kilometers a year but have not made any large route changes. They consider this a benefit as it helps sustain ridership because the community members age with the system and know how to get from point A to point B without little direction.

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Public transportation buses are not ADA accessible, there is a separate private taxi in which folks can access if necessary.

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The routes crisscross across town with the center mid-point originating downtown, this crisscross approach allows for majority of the city to be covered.

Change is hard, no matter what country you are in:

The Tandil transit system recently saw an increase in fees. As a result the students at the local university have demonstrated against this recent increase.

Shortly after my visit with the Director of Transportation our group headed off to a local university, as we walked the halls there was an assortment of posters up protesting the recent increase of fees for students. With a little help from my host mom I was able to translate what they said.

The posters protested the increase in fees on the students as well as their views concerning public transportation. Many of the students view transportation as a right and not a privilege and the government should provide this service. Another poster listed the demands that the students wanted met if the system is to raise their fees.

A few of the demands read as follows:

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All buses should be well maintained and in good operating order

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Buses should be accessible to all, ADA compliant

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Buses should run on time

I was disappointed to have seen these posters after my visit with the Director of Transportation, I would have loved to inquire a little deeper into the issues and concerns of the student body with the Director, but nonetheless the posters and the visit provided me with an insight into similar challenges that face many of our communities in Idaho. The cost of transportation continues to go up and with limited funding, service provided can be greatly impacted. In Tandil the budget constraints impacted the quality of the service provided, for example poor maintained buses. In Idaho, the funding limitations unfortunately impact the quantity of the service provided.

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In the news…

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We made the news in our last town, General Madariaga.

We now find ourselves safely in Mar del Plata but we are thankful to our wonderful hosts and the good times we had this past weekend– from an asado, a visit to a museum of natural history, to birthday parties, a gaucho festival (or rodeo) and a delicious good bye potluck dinner.

Many thanks to everyone in Gral. Madariaga for being so good to us.

Vocational Day 2– Caitlin

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Greetings from Trenque Lauquen!

Yesterday we journeyed from Santa Rosa to another city about two hours to the east. We are thankful for the hospitality of the wonderful people we met while in Santa Rosa. We are impressed with the kindness and generosity of everyone we met there and were sad to leave.

Since arriving in Trenque Lauquen, I had my second vocational visit today at the library in the town. There were many things that I found absolutely fascinating about this library, but the visit reminded me of the fundamental purpose and necessity of libraries. For the democratic process to work properly, everyone must have equal access to information and knowledge. From what I witnessed today, the library in Trenque Lauquen provides exactly that.

One interesting aspect of this library is its collection of Braille books. This collection was developed and continues to be added to depending on requests from blind students in the schools. The librarian I met said that this is an example of citizens filling in and volunteering their time as to meet the needs of other residents when the government doesn’t have ample resources. I found this information extremely encouraging because I tend to have a very negative view of human nature. This community demonstrates a large sense of objectivity and ability to notice gaps in resources provided governmentally and in response, an ability to rise to the occasion to meet those needs. It reminds me of the Margaret Mead quote, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.”

In conclusion, I believe this concept is very similar to the philosophy of Rotary and I’m so excited to learn more about it.

Photo 1: Jorge drinks mate´ as he sorts through hundreds of donated VHS tapes.

Photo 2: The archives of Trenque Lauquen newspapers and magazines.

Photo 3: A book from 1904.

Photo 4: A jade-ite typewriter (shout out to my mom) 

Photo 5: The head librarian

Photo 6: A complete view of the library

Last training meeting

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We held our last training meeting in Twin Falls on April 14, 2012.  We practiced our presentation in Spanish and discussed all our last preparataions for our month long adventure to Argentina.  We want to thank several sponsors who have given us uniforms to wear on our trip including JR Simplot Company, D.L. Evans Bank, Dale’s Commerical Real Estate Services, and Hewlett Packard Corp.  We are ready to run!