Chesterfield GRTC bus riders will soon see some changes to the GRTC bus costs and availability.
County officials say they had to cut back services, because the buses were costing more than predicted. The changes officially start February 11.
"The increased costs and the lower than expected revenue have come together to create a situation where the county is not going to cover the transportation costs currently being provided," said Larry Hagin, Director of Planning and Scheduling at GRTC.
As a result, seven rides are getting cut. On Route 82, two rides will get cut from both the morning and evening runs. On Route 81, two rides will be cut in the morning and one in the afternoon.
The fare for Route 82 will go up by $1, Route 81 will go up by 50 cents.
"Those buses are going to be fuller and folks are going to have to plan accordingly for that," said Hagin. "Because it's going to be hard to tell whether the buses are going to be at capacity or not."
Here's why: on Route 82, about 300 people ride the bus each day. There will be three remaining rides each way. But even if GRTC uses its biggest buses, they'll only be able to move 168 people each way.
That means almost half the current riders won't fit. They'll have to find another way to get to work.
"They're very concerned," said Hagin. "They're concerned about the fact that the schedule is being reduced and it might not work for them anymore."
Hagin also reported that many bus riders have expressed concern that they could be paying hundreds of dollars more to get to work if they can't take the bus. That's because they're saving in parking, fuel, and toll costs by taking public transportation.
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