First, before we get to the exciting stuff about all the new bus business, an important way to get involved:
GRTC will host a public meeting tomorrow, June 18th, at 6:00 PM (2300 W. Broad Street) to discuss the removal of a bus stop at Davis & Broad and a permanent redesign of the (yet-to-launch) routes #50, #76, and #77. These sudden changes, after years of public process and just a couple of weeks before the new system opens on June 24th, come in response to nearby residents expressing concerns about the proximity of the three routes to homes on Grace Street and to the William Byrd Senior apartments.
GRTC has a temporary plan to move the stop and the routes away from this block bounded by Broad, Davis, Grace, and Robinson and, on Monday, will request feedback on a proposed permanent redesign. Bus service in Richmond operates on a fixed budget. Any additional costs incurred by removing bus service on this block could mean cuts to bus service in another part of town.
Please consider attending this public meeting to let GRTC know that whatever the plans are for this block of Grace Street, they should not negatively impact another neighborhood’s access to the bus network.
AROUND THE REGION
On to the excitement!
The Pulse and all of the totally redesigned bus routes will launch on June 24th! That’s NEXT SUNDAY!! NEXT! SUNDAY!
That week, all rides on GRTC will be free (hooray!). To celebrate we’re launching RVA Transit Week! Think of it as a Choose Your Own Adventure but for riding the bus. We’ve put together a list of suggested bus trips—at least one for each day—spread throughout the city using a variety of different routes and the Pulse. We hope that these options will inspire you to get out and ride the bus—that first week and beyond.
As some added incentive to get out there and ride, we’ve got two pairs of tickets to that week’s Friday Cheers (Turnpike Troubadours with Charley Crockett) to give away. Just reply to this email by June 22nd, and I’ll randomly pick two lucky winners. Spend some time enjoying music on the river by bus—Brown’s Island is easily accessible by both the #87 and #5.
New York City has included $106 million in their latest budget to help subsidize public transit for low-income riders. The Fair Fares program will offer half price MetroCards to New Yorkers whose income is below the federal poverty line. In Richmond, GRTC does offer reduced fares for adults over the age of 65, riders with certain disabilities, and minors, however, we don’t have a similar program for low-income riders.
This is neat: In Cincinnati, the Better Bus Coalition is making DIY benches for bus stops that have no street furniture. When all the new changes launch on June 24th we’ll have more frequent routes, which means less waiting around, but we’ve still got our own share of stops in town where folks could use a comfortable place to sit.
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