Shore Transit makes changes based on riders’ feedback

Shore Transit 2

Shore Transit riders are traveling on new routes, now that changes are in place like shorter, more focused trips to and from work and express journeys.

Changes were made after customers’ needs were reviewed, said Steve Hoehn of Shore Transit.

Last year the company moved 424,232 passengers over 2.3 million miles on transit and medical buses in Wicomico, Somerset and Worcester counties.

After a passenger survey last summer, public hearings, feedback from riders and input from a consulting company, changes were put into effect, he said.

As a result, it will cost a little more to transport employees to work in the morning and return them more quickly in the afternoon, but the four and one-half loop of the region has been replaced by shorter, more focused routes, according to a press release issued by Shore Transit.

Riders will be able to move from one bus to the next at a reduced fare, using a transfer ticket issued by the driver.

Also, a new route in the West Ocean City-Berlin area, using a trolley, will continue until Labor Day. It began in May. The route is sponsored until end of summer Ocean Downs, the town of Berlin, Ocean Pines Association and Burley Oak Brewing Company, allowing a discounted fare of $1 per ride. A schedule is available by calling 443-260-2300.

Shore Transit, formed in 2004 to provide public transportation to the three lower counties at a reduced cost, has 43 buses and six vans and cars operated by a staff of 100. The organization receives funding and support from the Maryland Transit Administration.

Veterans have ridden free since May, thanks to a grant from the Lower Shore Fund for Community Needs.

It’s a benefit praised by Michael Pennington, Tri-County Council executive director, who said transportation “is important to quality of life.”

“We have found helping people get to jobs is a critical piece of our region’s economic development. Veterans are highly trained and skilled members of our community.  Helping them reenter the workforce after their military service is a valuable boost to everyone,” he said.

Area health departments use Shore Transit, as do Go-Getters Inc., Salisbury University and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

Reach Susan Canfora at scanfora@newszap.com.

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