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Expanded public transit service in Rochester begins Sunday

Rochester Public Transit will restore last routes stopped in its pandemic response and complete the renumbering of routes

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Commuters board a Rochester Public Transit bus March 18, 2020, along Second Street Southwest in downtown Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin file photo

ROCHESTER – Rochester city bus service will see widespread changes Sunday.

Rochester Public Transit is restoring the last of the routes that were suspended at the onset of COVID-19 and completing a long-planned system renumbering.

The changes are expected to improve the availability and efficiency of transit operations by increasing the number of trips by 9.6% systemwide and serving new areas, bringing new transit service to an additional 2,200 Rochester residents.

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“Like every transit system in the country, RPT is recovering from ridership loss due to the pandemic,” RPT Communications Coordinator Nick Lemmer said in a statement addressing the changes. “With this service launch on Sunday, we are rebuilding our service levels to meet current and future needs.

“We are also completing system renumbering and expanding to new areas – work that was included in our current Transit Development Plan – as we prepare for the adoption this summer of a new 5-year plan, and a new set of recommended enhancements.”

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Timetables for all routes are being adjusted to improve on-time performance and to add more frequent service in some cases. All weekday routes will now conform to a three-digit naming convention.

New routes – numbered 103, 202, 204, 206, 306 and 309 – will replace previous route variations, take on service removed from one or more existing routes, and in some cases, expand service into new areas.

No significant route path changes will be made to the following:

  • Express service Routes 150X, 250X and 560X
  • Shopper service Routes 505 and 506
  • Weekend/evening/holiday service Routes 21-26, with the exception of Route 24.

Rochester Public Transit is recommending customers review new schedule information.
New route maps and timetables are posted on the RPT website, https://www.rochestermn.gov/government/departments/public-transportation.

DoubleMap real-time bus tracking and Google Transit also have been updated with changes to go live on Sunday.

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