Free shuttle service from Fan to Shockoe Bottom

By Rachel DePompa - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Something new is on the streets in Richmond. If you need a free ride through downtown, there's a new bus service that's truly hard to miss. And it's not just a matter of convenience -- but safety.

What's green, black and free? Well, don't call it the party bus.

"We refer to it as the safety bus," said Owner Jim Porter.

No joke here, this is Richmond's newest ride.

"If it's reliable free and there and it's pretty hard to miss. I think you know you'll catch the ride," said Miles Quillen.

It runs Wednesday through Sunday, starting at Carytown's Elwood Thompson driving through VCU, Shockoe Slip and ending in the Bottom. It's call 'To the Bottom and Back'.

"For people that live in VCU or Carytown for them to actually move through the city and enjoy the shops the restaurants the bars," said Porter.

It's Jim Porter's leap of faith. It's an old Baltimore Maryland school bus he painted green and black. He accepts donations and will start letting businesses advertise on the bus to help pay for gas and the driver.

This is its second week on the road and it's catching on fast.

"We stop at a couple places there and they have been great. They've been running up 'Where we get on, how long it is going to take to get back. Can we just ride around?'" said bus driver Rena Spence.

And this is more than just a bus. They've removed some seats and put in a bar so they can serve free food at the end of the night and they're going to put shelves with brochures for all of the attractions in Richmond.

"We want to move people all over this city so they can see the history this city has to offer," said Porter.

He calls it a Safety Bus, because Porter's hoping to prevent people from even thinking about drinking and driving.

Again this bus runs all weekend long. Friday night and Saturday through 3 in the morning and on Sunday until 8:00 at night. You can find out more about this new bus service here. Information includes the bus route, and where it stops.

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