Bus being removed from Purple Line route

Herald staff

A minor change is coming to the Topper Transit Purple Line.

Jennifer Tougas, director of Parking and Transportation, said a bus on the Purple Line will be removed for this semester.

The Purple Line, also known as the Safe Ride service, runs from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. Thursdays through Saturdays. The  service provides transportation for students who may be too intoxicated to drive.

Tougas said ridership decreased about 30 percent last semester, due in part to competition from the private sector, such as taxi services and free sober rides.

“The students were choosing those services over the fixed route service that we were offering,” Tougas said. “It didn’t justify the cost to keep that third bus on the route, so we’re returning to two buses which is how we ran the service last year.”

Tougas said she wasn’t expecting the drop to happen.

“Usually, it’s the opposite,” Tougas said. “Usually when you add a bus and you increase the level of service, you see an increase in ridership.” 

The bus removed from the Purple Line route will remain a part of Parking and Transportation’s bus fleet and will be used for other services as needed.