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Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

Toronto
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Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

For my trip from Toronto to Chicago, the train arrives at Buffalo-Depew station at 1:45 pm and my next train does not leave until 11:59 pm, giving me essentially an afternoon in Buffalo.

I'm on a budget but also a solo female traveller. I've been researching on ways to get from the station to Downtown Buffalo and back in the cheapest and safest way possible. I was thinking of taking the #6 bus from the station to Downtown. But I noticed that the bus cuts right through the East Side which I read was a big no-no area for somebody like me to be travelling in. Should I be concerned as long as I am not getting off the bus?

Thanks in advance!

Tonawanda, New York
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1. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

How about grabbing a cab down to the Galleria Mall. You can shop, people watch, eat and catch a movie for the day. I don't think I would ride a bus through the East side.

Buffalo
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2. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

Another alternative would be to take a cab into the nearby Village of Williamsville, which has interesting shops, restaurants, and (if the weather cooperates) a lovely park with waterfalls.

New York State, USA
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3. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

Hi CugirlC! Just wondering what day of the week you're traveling?

Downtown Buffalo is pretty empty on Saturdays and Sundays, and the bus schedules are reduced then, too. Also, there's virtually no shopping in downtown Buffalo either. Do you have anything particular that you'd like to do in Buffalo?

If you do decide to take the bus, you will be driving through a bad neighborhood but you will be safe on the bus. I've *never* heard of anything bad happening on public transportation except kids getting into fights. btw, I've taken that bus to the airport once myself. You'll get an eyeful of Buffalo slums, but that's about it.

Another alternative you might consider is to take a taxi to (& from) the Bflo Airport, which is a hop, skip and a jump away from the train station. The airport offers a shuttle (public transportation) to downtown which uses the expressway and thus avoids the bad neighborhood. Here is a link to the shuttle: www.nfta.com/metro/routes/routes.aspx?id=204 There's a pdf you can click on to see the schedule.

-Dee

Toronto
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4. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

Thanks for the replies!

Dee - Taking the taxi to the airport and then the public transit to Downtown is a brilliant idea! I think I will do that.

I will be there on Thursday, March 25 to be exact. Between getting to and from the station, a late lunch and dinner (of buffalo wings and beef on weck), there isn't that much time to do a whole lot. I'm mainly into sightseeing. I was thinking of walking around Downtown, taking in the buildings and architecture. Then do a self-tour of City Hall (since I will have missed the noon walking tour by the time I arrive) and up the observation deck. Walk up along Elmwood and then across Allen to arrive at the Rail. That's pretty much it -- does that sound okay?

New York State, USA
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5. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

That is an excellent plan! Really sounds like you did your homework.

Just make sure you stop into the Visitors Center at 617 Main St (between the "Fountain Plaza" and the "Theatre" stops on the train, which I'm sure you know is FREE above ground). It is a *gorgeous* old building with a buffalo-head keystone. Inside they have maps, and a self-guided walking tour brochure for architecture. There's also a "Buffalo Tours" brochure with a map and 50 sites around downtown. You can dial a number (if you have a working cell phone in the USA...), punch in a code, and hear a 2 - 4 minute blurb about each site.

The only thing I would change about your plan is Elmwood Ave. It's not really hopping downtown (you have to go further north to get to the action). Instead, I would stick to Delaware Ave which is lively-er.

btw, if you get off the Metro shuttle at the bus station downtown and you look south, you will see an amazing old building with a tall steeple on 121 Ellicott Street. That is the Old Post Office, today the City Campus of Erie Community College. It's open to the public and has one of the greatest interiors in Buffalo - you have to see it to believe it. You're welcome to go inside and I highly recommend it.

Chicago is great... if you like architecture, you'll LOVE Chicago. Bflo has 2 bldgs by Chicago architects: Ellicott Square Building by Daniel Burnham, and the Guaranty Building by Adler & Sullivan. Those are two more places that are must sees in Bflo, along with City Hall. Also, make sure to stop by the 13th floor (yes, I said 13th floor!) of City Hall to take a peak at the Common Council Chambers at the end of the hall. Look up at the skylight - it's amazing.

Happy travels!

-Dee

New York State, USA
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6. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

Oops, one more thing. I noticed you want to pick up the train at the Allen Station - that's the first (or last) stop underground and you're supposed to have a paid ticket to get on the train there (the train uses the honor system). Unless you have some kind of day-pass, you might want to walk back up a few blocks to the Theatre Station where the train is above ground. Since Main Street between Allen St and the Theatre Station is a bit deserted, I would probably recommend a walk up Franklin Street to see some great old 19th C. houses.

-Dee

Toronto
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7. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

Thanks, Dee. This is super helpful!!

Buffalo, New York
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8. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

If you are thinking about taking the bus to downtown from the train station \ airport, a day pass is more economical, only 4 dollars, which would let you get on the train at any of the underground stations like Allen-Medical Campus back to downtown and cover the cost back out to the airport. It might be best \ fastest to take the 6 downtown straight from train station. The 204 is the airport express route, which runs about every 30 minutes, so you will have to plan your schedule to see what works best as you get in to the city.

I take the public transit all around the city and the buses, even if they pass through a bad neighborhood, are quite safe. There are a lot of great buildings and neighborhoods to see between Downtown and Allentown and the walk is only about 15 - 20 minutes depending on where you are downtown. As you go to Allentown you will also find many restaurants and places open as well.

New York State, USA
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9. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

Hey sbrof, is the day pass good for all zones (including the suburbs)?

-Dee

Buffalo, New York
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10. Re: Bus ride from Depew Amtrak station to Downtown - safe?

yeah, day passes are good for just about anything anywhere. They won't get you onto special routes, like Game Day buses to Bills games or to Darian Lake but you can ride the regular \ express \ subway as much as you want. \

You can buy them on any bus or at any of the 'blue' machines at the train stations. The red machines are older (and actively being replaced) and don't dispense the newer fare options. They really are the most convenient way to move around if you are going to travel about for a day via public transit.

http://www.nfta.com/metro/fares.asp