Elimination of stop on bus route could leave some students without ride

Posted at 6:15 PM, Apr 11, 2012
and last updated 2012-04-12 10:42:44-04

CHESTER, Va. (WTVR) - A stop along a GRTC bus route scheduled to eliminated in May has some students at a community college in Chester worried about how they will get to class.

The Greater Richmond Transit Authority's Petersburg Express bus route was designed to take commuters directly from Petersburg to downtown Richmond.

That expansion route met early with success, so about four years ago, a stop at John Tyler Community College in Chester was added.

The original idea was to pickup commuters who lived in the area and who also worked in downtown Richmond. But the stop had an added benefit of allowing people living in the Petersburg area to use that same bus to get to the college.

However, when the stop is slated to be eliminated on May 14, about a dozen students that use the route said they may not be able to get class.

GRTC officials said they are nixing the stop because it slowed down the express route by diverting it off the interstate.

Also, GRTC said that because the route cannot be advertised as a park and ride, since the college requires students to pay to park.

Officials said those fees are all the college has to maintain their parking lot.

Ultimately, GRTC would like to see a Chester Express to Richmond using a designated park and ride lot.

But in the past several years, they haven't been able to come up with a parking lot that meets their requirements.

John Tyler Community College officials said they sent out a survey to find out just how many students will be affected by the change.