Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

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Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby trilobyte » Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:08 pm

In an effort to reduce traffic and limit the environmental impact of our event, Burning Man organizers are offering the Burner Express bus service with pickups in San Francisco and the Reno airport to Black Rock City and back. This service offers early arrival, speedier entrance, ticket pick up, reserved camping and quicker departures.

Burner Express is ideal for participants flying into the event and for Burners involved in art projects and theme camps having their gear hauled in by campmates. Tickets start at $60 one way from the Reno-Tahoe International Airport and $95 one way from the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco. Additional charges apply for extra luggage or for a stop at a grocery store in Reno. Departures begin from both locations Saturday, August 24 and return trips begin Friday, August 30.

Large motor coach buses will take Burners to Gerlach, where they will hop on smaller buses for the ride into Black Rock City. There will be a “bus only” lane to sidestep traffic backups at Gate and Greeters, and bus passengers will have their own Will Call station for speedier ticket pick up. (Please note: ONLY Burner Express and Green Tortoise buses are permitted in the bus lane.)

Once inside BRC, bus riders have the option of camping in a reserved camping section on the 6 o’clock access road or taking shuttles out to 3 o’clock or 9 o’clock along G Street.

For more information, see the FAQ on our Burner Express page.

To purchase tickets, visit the Burner Express website.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Theraplst » Wed Jul 17, 2013 8:51 pm

I Got my ticket, perhaps we can get an ePlaya camp set up in the reserved area? anyone?
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby jkisha » Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:17 pm

This is a GREAT idea!!
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Token » Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:20 pm

Glitterati Express.

Bringing you commodification in the name of green.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby trilobyte » Thu Jul 18, 2013 12:40 am

It's no more commodification than you booking or planning any other part of your travel to and from the playa. Reservations, plans, and payment are made in advance.

I've had friends take various bus options over the years, and heard (as well as seen on the board) enough stories to convince me that results could vary GREATLY not only between operators and years, but between drivers on the same operator. Anything from glowing reviews to horror stories about delays or getting left at the gate (or even in the gate line). If that experience can be improved for everyone, that's awesome. And if they're able to handle enough of a capacity increase that it makes a meaningful dent in the number of cars on the highway for entry and exodus, even better. Only 1K vehicles get onto the road an hour, so the more in each vehicle the merrier. The environmental impact is also nice, but almost doesn't even matter at that point, it's a win in my book.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby lemur » Thu Jul 18, 2013 1:29 am

Token wrote:Glitterati Express.

Bringing you commodification in the name of green.



yeah!!!

cuz in getting to burning man we all build our own cars.. with steel, aluminium, glass, and plastics that we made ourselves

sheer our own sheep.. grow our own cotton and work the loom to make our own clothes

then we refine our own oil

make our own tires and bicycles, of course..

grow our own groceries, raise and slaughter our own meat.. mix our own gatorade and bake our own crackers and bread!

make our own carloads of plastic goods with the skills we learned making our cars! ziplock bags, plastic bins, disposable forks and knives.. all sorts!

distill all of our spirits and brew all of our beer (which we can and bottle ourselves, obviously)

build our own batteries and electronic equipment for our headlamps and blinkies and stereos

we cut the paths for and pave our own roads

we provide for our own medical/fire/police on the way to / during / and on the way home from the event

and of course we could not go to burning man without making our own dust masks and mixing up our own sunblock

and making our own lotion and preparation H..

my buddy and i totally also use the hides from the cattle we raise and slaughter to tan leather for all of our work gloves.. and to cover some of the couches we bring (of course, we build the furniture too)

speaking of furniture... we also produce our own wood with a nice tree farm out back.. the guys at the mill work pretty hard (but the guys in the shop next to them that make all of the machinery and blades for the mill tend to work a bit harder)

we also run our own electrical generation plant to do all of this.. of course, we arent super rich.. so its coal fed

we spend quite a lot of time in our coal mine, its a bit of a bummer.. but not as much of a bummer as all of the time we need to spend in texas pulling all the oil out of the ground so we can make the plastics and refine the gasoline that we use in our hand built cars

but at the end of the day, when i get a big meal, its all worth it because i get to use the knives that ive forged myself to cut into the lovely steaks that i brought up off of the land to go with a potato i grew myself on the plate that i fired and glazed myself...all happy in knowing that im radically self reliant.

of course.. i dont camp in BRC.. because BRC isnt nearly as radically self reliant as i am

the LLC is spending almost 2 million a year on rental stuff !!!

and another 2 million on paying OTHER PEOPLE to provide for stuff like medical/fuel/fire safety/ticket sales and processing.

sheez! what a buncha rubes, well over 4 million in commodification each year! (i heard they even make a profit on this thing! A PROFIT!!!) they should totally practice what they preach, like i do.. and be radically self reliant.



(in other news: i think the bus idea is great.. i took one of the previous bus incarnations for 2 years and it got me to and from the event in relative safety and it certainly didnt feel to me any more of a 'commodification' of the burn than buying my plane tickets, or my reno hotel room.. or the grocery store trip.. .. ya gotta spend money to get to the burn.. whats so different about paying Joe Shmoe to drive you up than paying John Doe to rent a car and drive yourself up? ..... not everyone has a drivers license, or is able/willing to drive, ya know..)
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby jkisha » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:15 am

^^that was a whole lot of words just to say that from a practical standpoint, you don't agree^^
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby lemur » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:38 am

thats what makes it fun.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Cal_cloud » Thu Jul 18, 2013 12:40 pm

Definitely picked up a ticket for myself... It works for me on so many levels.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Savannah » Thu Jul 18, 2013 12:45 pm

jkisha wrote:^^that was a whole lot of words just to say that from a practical standpoint, you don't agree^^


lemur wrote:thats what makes it fun.


:lol:
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Veeyawn » Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:55 pm

The only thing that feels weird is the "reserved camping" area.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Savannah » Thu Jul 18, 2013 4:10 pm

Why? A reserved spot makes total sense. These are people without cars. Some of 'em will have a friend come find them and take them to their actual camp, and there are drop-off shuttles along 3:00 and 9:00, I see--but a lot of those folks won't have a camp or know anyone on the playa (hence their lack of a ride).

If this service had been available years ago, I might not have missed 2004-2007 (when I had no drivers license, and no close friends who burned).
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Eric » Thu Jul 18, 2013 4:18 pm

Veeyawn wrote:The only thing that feels weird is the "reserved camping" area.


Green Tortoise has had a reserved area for years - it's just a big, empty patch of desert. I think there's a communal shade structure (and I don't know about kitchen facilities), but it's nothing fancy. Like Savannah said, when you don't have a vehicle, and may not have a group to join. It's certainly better than just getting dumped on a random street.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby trilobyte » Thu Jul 18, 2013 4:43 pm

+1 to what's been said above. The space reserved for the bus drop isn't prime playa real estate. Don't get me wrong, every part of the city is filled with the potential for awesome, but the point is that existing camps (registered or otherwise) are not suddenly being denied a high profile location.

I think it's important to have space near the landing point to camp if they so choose (they're still welcome to make their way elsewhere, or have campmates meet them and take them off to some other location).
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby FIGJAM » Thu Jul 18, 2013 5:18 pm

Not sure hoe to feel about a "special" lane for buses. :?
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby theCryptofishist » Thu Jul 18, 2013 6:33 pm

FIGJAM wrote:Not sure hoe to feel about a "special" lane for buses. :?

Then there's a "special" "special" lane for short buses.


And yes, I know, short bus jokes are really mean spirited.

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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby trilobyte » Thu Jul 18, 2013 7:28 pm

It can be painful to see someone going ahead of you if you're stacked up in the line, but if anything warrants a bonus lane, I'd think it'd be mass transit. And being a Burning Man operation/partnership, I'd imagine the stowaway factor's zero, and all passengers have been flight-checked to make sure they've got tickets and any necessary paperwork. I'm all for them getting the vehicle through so it can turn around and have a shot in hell of staying on schedule.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby pink » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:56 pm

It's kind of like the vendors have a special lane too. Or maybe they're using the vendor lane. It's a way to encourage mass transit, which with bringing minimal gear, and maybe just being dumped by the entrance road isn't all that appealing. That said, one of my campmates used the To Flame bus last year, and it was a bitch getting in; they were about 6 hours behind schedule and then she still had to get herself over to the camp since there wasn't decent schedule where we could meet her.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby lemur » Fri Jul 19, 2013 1:17 am

as someone whos been camping around the 6 o'clock entry road for years let me assure you that you neednt feel cheated: this area is often empty anyways.

not as in 'no cool camps are there'

but as in 'large areas of empty unused desert'
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Token » Fri Jul 19, 2013 3:15 pm

Sheesh, all you FKOs got them knickers in a wad right quick.

It is still commodification. Its a package deal. A destination. You pay and bingo, you are there.

The experience and process becomes removed and becomes a comodity obtained by a few clicks o the mouse and a credit card.

Ergo: Commodification.

How much dangerous art can pack into a bus tour vacation package?

Suckage.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby trilobyte » Sat Jul 20, 2013 12:08 am

Get your own panties unbunched, Mr. Bitchypants. :wink: It's just like the money you spend on every other form of transportation to get to the event. For those who aren't dealing with larger infrastructure/haulage needs, it seems a pretty good deal.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Eric » Sat Jul 20, 2013 2:10 am

Token wrote:How much dangerous art can pack into a bus tour vacation package?


Probably not a lot, but you can pack a shit-ton of people to build it, and to volunteer at different areas of the city. Not really sure how this is that much different than a ride-share, other than the fact that it's directly organized by BMan, which just (hopefully) makes it more reliable than the ToFlame bus (or whatever that was called). How much would you pay for shared gas, etc for a ride-share? You probably wouldn't be carrying a whole lot of "dangerous art" in that situation either.

I do not think the word "commodification" means what you think it does...
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby Token » Sat Jul 20, 2013 6:42 am

Eric wrote:
Token wrote:How much dangerous art can pack into a bus tour vacation package?


Probably not a lot, but you can pack a shit-ton of people to build it, and to volunteer at different areas of the city. Not really sure how this is that much different than a ride-share, other than the fact that it's directly organized by BMan, which just (hopefully) makes it more reliable than the ToFlame bus (or whatever that was called). How much would you pay for shared gas, etc for a ride-share? You probably wouldn't be carrying a whole lot of "dangerous art" in that situation either.

I do not think the word "commodification" means what you think it does...


Perhaps tho I feel this statement by the mother ship is rather tempting for scholarly debate:

We resist the substitution of consumption for participatory experience.


Your first point on willing hands is well made and taken, despite the purely speculative nature on intent and execution of the consumers of the service.

Having precedence on similar services like the Tortoise or other grass roots efforts doesn't necessarily remove the commodification aspect of the Org now running resort services.

Edited to fix broken ubb tags.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby delle » Sat Jul 20, 2013 7:35 am

Interesting option.

Just wondering if the minimum requirements to have on one's person would be different (in terms of water, shelter and food).

I would imagine if I were to use this service I'd probably have the bulky stuff brought in by someone with a car (who would be there before I could arrive) to avoid having to schlep it all several roads from the drop-off.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby trilobyte » Sat Jul 20, 2013 10:08 am

I think part of your problem is that you're equating all potential bus riders as people who would not participate in the event (whether it's building art, working on projects, performing, etc). I don't see any evidence to support the argument that the choice of transportation ties into participation level. If you've got some data on level of participation by mode of transportation, I'd love to see it. If you do have it, do you also break it down by vehicle type? If so, that would be great, because one of our campmates drives an old volkswagen Jetta, and I've always suspected that to be the vehicle of a slacker... :mrgreen:

One of my campmates last year came in on a rideshare. Thinking back, I'd describe it as more of a comedy rideshare, it involved a bus of puppeteers at one point (he was traveling across several states). I think he only had one bag of stuff and a tent with him. So, he paid others for gas and came in with minimal supplies. And he worked his ass off all week long. Not just helping with our camp, but he had multiple shifts at the ARTery, as well as other volunteer commitments and general do-ocracy kinds of participation.

Even with the minimal luggage allowance on the thing, that's about what your typical car-traveling burner in a vehicle with others gets. A couple big things and something small that would ride with you in the car. Hell, thousands upon thousands of burners come into the city carrying less. The large luggage option has quite a gear allowance, not only covering a bike but a fairly significant camp. Sure, if you're flying solo it'd be tough to build a theme camp with just that... but theme camps aren't just one person. And theme camps don't represent the only way that people camp at Burning Man. Most people don't camp in registered theme camps, actually. But I digress.

Choosing to travel by bus, and buying a bus ticket, is not a declaration of non-participation. That is, I don't think so - I haven't signed up for the service but I'm pretty sure the terms and conditions don't state that the person agrees to substitute the purchase of a ticket for a participatory experience.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby trilobyte » Sat Jul 20, 2013 10:09 am

Putting on the mod hat for a minute, I'm reposting this relevant info:

TO FLAME BUSES NOT AUTHORIZED TO ENTER BLACK ROCK CITY IN 2013

Burning Man organizers want participants to know the To Flame bus operated by Rally Bus will not be granted access to Black Rock City in 2013.

Companies providing bus service to the Burning Man event are required to secure permits from Burning Man and the Bureau of Land Management. To Flame and Rally Bus have not secured these permits.

Additionally, Burning Man issued a Request for Proposals for a bus service to the event earlier this year. To Flame submitted a proposal, but was not selected based on gaps in their operational plan to support the event, previous track record and negative feedback about their bus service from operators and participants.

During the RFP process Burning Man advised To Flame to not sell any additional tickets. To Flame was not selected as the bus service vendor, but continued to advertise bus service during and after the RFP process. On June 26 Burning Man issued a Cease & Desist letter to the company.

Participants have a few options for public transportation to the playa, including the new BRC-supported Burner Express bus service operating from the Reno-Tahoe International Airport and the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco. For more information on options, visit this page.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby jkisha » Sat Jul 20, 2013 11:02 am

The only part of that I didn't understand is why would BMORG have asked them to stop selling tickets during the RFP period?
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby lemur » Sat Jul 20, 2013 11:16 am

when i took the bus for 2 years ..all of the people i talked to were very involved and 'participating'

of the people sitting next to me that i spoke to those two years, who i can remember:

one did lots of work for a popular daytime dance camp
one did lots of work for a well known hippie psychedelic/info workshop/party village
3 did work every day among the various volunteer depts
one was a fire conclave person

and there was mE.. working every day for a volunteer dept.


it felt to me, judging by the discussions and how people separated after the bus got to its drop off.. that just the nature of what it was meant that most folks had a camp location where they were going (even tho we had all our own gear/food/water)
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby lemur » Sat Jul 20, 2013 11:19 am

and i seem to recall, as we went around the bus each year to do a bit of 'about me' thing to kill time that a big majority of the people had been to the burn before.
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Re: Burner Express Bus Service To/From BRC

Postby jkisha » Sat Jul 20, 2013 11:24 am

I took the BioBus my very first burn and had a similar experience.
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