Here is an interesting article I came across today about providing massive service upgrades to bus systems at little to no cost for the provider. Houston Metro, the bus system in question, plans to reallocate its resources to the bus routes with the highest levels of ridership, and cut back from areas with little to no activity. In addition, the system also plans to cut so-called "redundant" routes, and prioritize passenger travel time, even if this results in an extra transfer or two.
As of now these overhauls are still just proposed changes, yet they do open up a crucial debate on ways to enhance fledgling or cash-strapped transit systems: By economizing resources to provide several fast, high-frequency, high-ridership routes, will such troubled public transport systems take off? Or will the cuts in service area lead these transit agencies into even deeper problems?