INTERVIEW: Pilot bus program coincides with Picasso Exhibition

By Ryan Nobles - bio | email
Posted by Phil Riggan – email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - It is expected to be one of the biggest event to hit the Richmond art scene in many years. A special Pablo Picasso exhibit is ready to bring thousands of people to town and millions of dollars.

But how will they all get around? To answer that question is Jim Porter, founder of the popular To the Bottom and Back bus service joined NBC12 on First at Four.

RYAN: Thank you for being here.

JIM PORTER: Thank you for on having me. It is important. This is a big step. This is what happens when communities, residents, and businesses come together the way we do things like this and within a matter of weeks.

RYAN: Tell me exactly what's going to happen. How are you going to play a role in helping people get around town?

JIM PORTER: We're going to be running a daytime shuttle starting on the 19th of February, every Saturday. It will start in the Bottom, 17th Street Market and up by the Museum and we're going to run two buses on a continuous loop and you will be able to see the stuff in Richmond, some of the museums, and you will be able to park and experience the city.

RYAN: So it's not just the Virginia Museum Fine Arts that's a part of this. This is an effort to get people to see all that Richmond has to offer?

JIM PORTER: They made a point to include the whole city. They really want to include everybody. That's how we sort of do things.

RYAN: How much is it going to cost if somebody wants to take part?

JIM PORTER: It's absolutely free. It's paid by sponsorships and donations.

RYAN: And you're a non-profit organization to begin with.

JIM PORTER: Non-profit, yes.

RYAN: So your goal is just to cover your costs, correct?


RYAN: How is this different than your normal bus service? You usually try to help people avoid drinking and driving so I imagine those crowds are a little more rowdy.

JIM PORTER: The people that ride the bus at night, chances are their parents are part of these new partnerships that we formed.

RYAN: Right, right.

JIM PORTER: The people that ride our buses at night did it so we were able to do this because of the numbers that we move and the way they act on the bus. They made it possible.

RYAN: Jim, it sounds like a pretty exciting venture and I know we'll have more on this on the shows later today. We appreciate you being here and good luck on this project.

JIM PORTER: Thank you so much. Come out and ride!

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