SunTran’s proposed route changes may affect Pima students

In early August, SunTran and the City of Tucson announced extensive bus route plan changes being discussed with the goal of “creating a more equitable, effective, and efficient transit network”. SunTran’s proposed changes affect nearly all current routes, including those leading to and from Pima’s campuses. Plans include more frequent service and extended hours, including on weekends.

While some view the potential changes as promising, others, especially those who heavily rely on the buses’ current routes, are unsure about the proposed changes.

SunTran’s 3 bus parked at the East campus, September 21, 2023

According to a 2022 study conducted by the ETC Institute, 20.9% of surveyed riders were students, many of whom are Pima students who will be affected by the proposed changes. Two such changes will be to routes 3 and 5, which are set to be discontinued. In the case of Route 3, students going between Pima’s East and West campuses will require a transfer from a revised Route 8 to a proposed new Route 33, or take a new Route 39 that would run between the campuses via Grant and Kolb.

Joe Langlois, current PCC faculty member and former student, expressed his disappointment about Route 3’s discontinuation.

“I used the 3 a lot when going to school here. I live on Speedway, and I could walk to 5th St. and catch the bus. It was very convenient when I had classes at the East and West campuses.”

The City of Tucson’s survey asking for public feedback on the project closed on September 8, and both SunTran’s survey results and public input are being considered as they develop their final plan, which will be presented to the city mayor later this year. More information on the proposed changes and individual route information can be found on