Photo courtesy of Cherriots.
Changes are coming to the Cherriots Local bus service, with a Sunday service being added and weekday service being temporarily reduced by 20%.
Good news first: Cherriots announced on Aug. 13 that for the first time in their history, the bus service would be operating on Sundays.
“This will be the first time in Cherriots' 42 years that we will offer Sunday service! To say this is a big deal would be an understatement,” Cherriots Board President Ian Davidson wrote on Twitter the day the service was announced.
As if the added service wasn’t good enough news, Cherriots also announced that Sunday rides would be free for all of September.
The Sunday service will operate on 12 of their 20 local routes and most routes will run every 60-minutes from 8 am to 8 pm.
“While there is less frequency and fewer of the routes, it’s great whenever we can add any service other than just weekdays,” said Cherriots spokesperson Patricia Feeny.
While weekend service will be expanding, weekday service is temporarily being reduced, Cherriots announced Aug. 27. Beginning Aug. 30, Cherriots Local service began operating at about 80% of its normal level.
“The same routes will be offered but it’s just a matter of whether you will be waiting 15 minutes, 30 minutes, or an hour for a ride,” said Feeny. “Always look at the route beforehand. During peak commute hours in the morning and evening, you will have the same times. But during the day when we don’t have as many people, it’s less.”
Staffing shortages are to blame for the reduced service, Cherriots said in its press release.
Ten Cherriots staff members have also tested positive for COVID, according to Feeny, which has affected the number of available drivers.
The temporary service is scheduled to last for at least a week, at which point officials will revisit the issue to decide what to do going forward.
News tip? Contact reporter Joey Cappelletti at [email protected] or 616-610-3093.