Valley Regional Transit making more changes to prevent the spread of coronavirus

Posted at 4:10 PM, Mar 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-26 18:10:16-04

MERIDIAN, Idaho — Valley Regional Transit (VRT) is taking additional steps to stop the spread of COVID-19 while still providing public transportation services. After Governor Little's statewide stay-at-home order, the public is encouraged to only use public transportation to access essential services, like medical appointments and grocery shopping.

Starting March 27, VRT facilities will be closed to the public. The closures include Main Street Station, Happy Day Transit Center and the VRT administrative offices in Meridian. Buses staged at Main Street Station will pick up passengers between 9th Street and the entrance to the station on Main Street.

There are also several bus route changes in Boise and Garden City to be aware of:

  • VRT will temporarily suspend operating the following Boise/Garden City routes: 8X, 11, 16 and 17. These routes are being suspended due to extremely low ridership
  • VRT will provide hourly service on Boise routes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7A-B, 8, 12, 28, 29
  • Route 10 Hill Road will operate hourly service except between 6-9 a.m. and 3-6 p.m., when service will be every 30 minutes
  • Route 9 State Street will operate on 15-minute frequency all day

Bus route changes for intercounty service:

  • Route 40 Nampa/Meridian Express will make three morning runs departing Nampa at 5:45 a.m., 6 a.m. and 6:15 a.m., and three afternoon runs departing at 2:45 p.m., 3 p.m. and 3:15 p.m.
  • Route 43 Caldwell Express will only make the 6:15 a.m. run and the 4:40 p.m. run.
  • Route 45 Boise State/CWI Express will operate only in the evenings, leaving CWI for three round trips at 4 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 6:45 p.m.

Bus route changes for Nampa/Caldwell

  • VRT will temporarily suspend operating the route 55 CWI Shuttle due to the closure of the College of Western Idaho campus.
  • There are no changes planned for routes 42, 51, and 52
  • ACCESS paratransit services will operate as usual.

The VRT Help Desk (208-345-7433) will also continue to operate on its regular schedule. Boise GreenBike will suspend all operations while the stay-at-home order is in place.

“While we would like to continue offering transportation alternatives, it is in the best interest of the citizens we serve and the people we employ to suspend operations temporarily,” said Dave Fotsch, Boise GreenBike director.

Fotsch said while GreenBike staff have taken extraordinary measures to keep the bikes and kiosks clean and disinfected, ridership has declined steadily since the city of Boise implemented increasingly strict orders that have resulted in closed businesses, public buildings and playgrounds.