Bay City public transit rerouting due to bridge tolls
BAY CITY, Mich. (WNEM) - Bay City Metro Transit said they’ll have to reroute many of its busses due to tolls scheduled to be put in place on Bay City’s Liberty Bridge.
A manager of Bay City Metro Transit said that while it’s unfortunate and costly, it’s not all bad.
“We’re a little surprised that we weren’t given an exemption given that we’re public transit and we’re state and federal funded,” said Jeff Anderson, the planning manager for Bay Metro Transit.
Surprised and a little frustrated, Anderson said they found out last month that they wouldn’t be exempt from paying the Bay City bridge tolls.
But he said through the frustration have come some positive changes.
“We’re actually expanding services as well. Nothing is going away. We’re just getting input from riders; where the buses don’t go now, where they would like to see them go. So, it’s been very positive feedback,” Anderson said.
On Thursday, they held a public meeting to discuss the new routes. The decision to reroute the buses was one Anderson said they had no choice in as using the tolls would cost them an estimated $300,000 per year.
Matt Hortop, the director of the Opportunity Center in Bay City, said he is just happy his clients will still be able to get around.
“We’re just really glad that there’s going to be transportation available for our folks to get around town. A lot of our members were worried that they wouldn’t be able to get to where they need to go,” Hortop said. “So, we’re happy that they’ll be able to go to Midland, they’ll be able to get around town, get to their appointments, and there won’t be any interruptions with access to the community.”
Anderson said Bay City Metro Transit hopes to eventually be able to negotiate something with the Bay City Bridge Partners to have free access to those bridges in the future.
“We would love to have an exemption, yeah. The Liberty Bridge is so close, it’s so convenient. Having to reroute that way adds about five minutes onto each route. So even though some of the routes haven’t changed, the routing the times have,” Anderson said.
The new routes will begin April 3.
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