The bus stops here: RMTD expands routes

The bus stops here: RMTD expands routes

By Shellie Berg

By Shellie Berg

Staff Reporter

The Rockford Mass Transit wants to create new bus service perks for bustling travelers.

The city’s 2001 proposed budget includes the plan to initiate the first circular route for Perryville and Alpine roads that ties in with present routes. It also entails deviations to Loves Park bus service.

“That’s a good thing in that for a small system, it’s very efficient,” said Lisa Brown, Mass Transit marketing/public relations specialist. “It’s the most efficient for passengers.”

The altered passenger service was created as such because both passengers and drivers requested it. “A lot of it is from passenger feedback,” Brown noted. “The West State route is heavily trafficked. Also, there’s a lot of growth in that Perryville quadrant of the city. WorldCom came to town and asked us to provide service out there.”

The new #17 Perryville/Alpine line will offer expanded pick-ups Saturdays on East State Street. Mass Transit plans to serve an area not currently reached with the bus service, including Perryville, between Riverside and Newburg and Newburg and Alpine Road north of Spring Creek to Riverside.

Bus users also will be able to travel from the northeast quadrant of the city to the southeast (or vice versa) on one bus and not have to transfer from downtown. The line also links to #14 Greenwood, #13 East State, #12 Charles Street and Loves Park 1.

The circular route departs from downtown at 5:45 a.m. and returns at 11:45. Present buses leave downtown and end after every hour, forcing passengers to transfer downtown. Brown said transferring downtown slows down passengers’ ability toget places quickly.

On Saturdays, Mass Transit will have service in addition to the East State route. Mass Transit will also provide 30-minute service Saturday afternoons.

From 10:15 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., the East State coach will depart 15 minutes after each hour. From 10:15 to 3:15 p.m., the buses pick up every two hours, but they won’t pick up at the South Main stops.

The six additional buses will utilize various locations including Midvale Apartments, Alma Nelson Nursing Home and Showplace 16.

For other points of interest in the Rock River Valley, Mass Transit will make changes to the Loves Park and Machesney Park area it encompasses.

The Loves Park Bus 1 won’t include shopping stops to Machesney Park Mall anymore. It will, however, take trips from North Towne Mall to Rock Valley College and Farm and Fleet.

Loves Park 2 will drive to Machesney Mall and return to the Machesney Park/Loves Park area.

Bus service costs $.50 for seniors and the disabled and $1 for adults. Transfers are free.

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