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County rolls out new commuter bus with Turlock service

County rolls out new commuter bus with Turlock service


POSTED August 25, 2016 6:51 p.m.

Turlock residents who are used to driving six to 10 hours every day to get to their jobs in the Bay Area and back now have another transportation option — the Stanislaus Regional Transit commuter bus.

On Monday, StaRT rolled out a brand new 45-foot commuter bus to transport riders from Turlock and the west side of the county to the Dublin/Pleasanton BART Station. The new bus is not like the city and regional buses in the area. Commuter bus amenities — including larger, more comfortable seats, foot rests, desks, free Wi-Fi and USB ports — are aimed at making the morning and evening commutes as comfortable and productive as possible for local riders.

"We tried to create a mobile office environment for commuters and make the seats more comfortable for longer rides," said Stanislaus County Director of Public Works Matt Machado.

The commuter bus picks up at the Turlock Regional Transit Center then travels to Patterson and continues to the Dublin BART Station. In Patterson, commuters can get on the commuter bus at the existing StaRT bus stop on Ward Avenue at Las Palmas Avenue. Through a partnership with the Patterson Walmart Supercenter on Sperry Avenue, StaRT leased 50 parking spaces from Walmart to use as a park and ride lot. The county recommends Patterson area commuters park their vehicles in the parking area to the left side of the front entrance in the Garden Center.

 While Modesto residents have been able to ride the Modesto Area Express to Altamont Commuter Express train station in Lathrop and the Dublin/Pleasanton BART station for a while, this is the first time that south and west county residents have been offered a public transportation option for commuting.

According to Machado, the new commuter service will fill a large need identified in the southern and western end of the county as more than 20 percent of the working population in Turlock commute to work in the Bay Area and over 40 percent of the Patterson/Newman working population commute.

Along with the new commuter bus, StaRT implemented other service changes including modifying Route 15 to extend service along West Main Street in Turlock, rerouting Route 60 to serve the Crossroad Shopping Center in Riverbank, providing a new fixed route service which will serve the communities of Waterford, Hickman, Hughson, Empire, Ceres and Modesto and improved service to Route 45-East in Patterson.

In the addition to the fixed route service, StaRT will implement a new shuttle service to replace the existing Waterford/Modesto Dial-A-Ride service. The Waterford/Modesto/Ceres shuttle will offer service to residents in the communities served which includes service to medical appointments, social activities and shopping.

The Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors approved these service changes along with the Fiscal Year 2016-2017 annual Transportation Development Act Claims during their June 7 Board meeting.

For more information on new routes and services, call 1-800-262-1516 or visit www.srt.org.

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