You are living in the past. Here in Tampa, public transit, that is buses, is growing faster than uber and lyft. (Disclaimer, my wife drove for Lyft until a couple of weeks ago, when she just got sick of the low return on time and our investment in a nice car). I was talking to a driver on the #6 route last week (my morning ride of 45-50 minutes door to desk) and he said they just hired 27 new drivers for route expansion and retirement replacement. Mostly expansion according to him. He has 30 years in as a driver and plans to stay on, the custoimers are getting nicer he says.
If I was driving, on the highway, it would take about 35 minutes from door to desk, so it costs me an extra 10-15 minutes to take the bus. Even at twice the loss consider this:
Bus cost: $.50 (50 cents) one way= $1.00 a day
Gas cost: 20 miles one way, 40 round trip, say $5.00 a day
Parking cost: $250.00 a year, say $1.00 a day minimum if I take no vacations
Cost of maintenance or carpayments for that second car (as it is we only keep one car because I don't need it to drive to work) as well as taxes and insurance.
OK, now think about this: instead of two crappy cars on my crappy salary we have a 2014 Chevy Volt, spend less than $100.00 a month on gas, $0 on maintenance, and have an nice, awesome ride. We are looking at trading up to a Tesla S when they come off of lease and we can get them about half price.
How could I do that if I was wasting my money on a second car?
More and more people can and should run this kind of simple cost/benefit analysis and realize that their lifestyle could be better just by making better choices. When I talk about this at work everyone has excuses, but the reality is that people are starting to move to my neighborhood because it has awesome bus service. the value of my house has gone up 45% in the last three years because it is close to downtown and has 5 different bus lines running on 15-20 minute schedules within 3 blocks of my front door.
So, your description of the bus is wrong, I know cause I ride it every day, dressed for my office and my classrooms and I fit in just fine.