C-Tran riders who prefer to let someone else do the driving should consider the Xpress bus, which currently operates three routes in Clayton: #440 (Tara Blvd. to Atlanta), #441 (Jonesboro to Midtown Atlanta) and #442 (Riverdale to Downtown Atlanta).
Pending FTA approval, three new Xpress routes will be added at: the new Jonesboro Park & Ride Station on Tara Boulevard; the Riverdale Park & Ride Station; and at a new stop to be determined in Morrow. Weekday morning and evening peak service from Riverdale and Jonesboro will be provided at 15-minute intervals, and from Morrow at 30 minute intervals, so the new routes will run more often than Clayton’s existing routes.
Worried what would happen if you had to leave early in an emergency? If you ride a regular Xpress route, the Guaranteed Ride Home program provides up to five FREE rides to your vehicle yearly. I’ve used this service, was taken to my car via cab in less than an hour and it cost me nothing but time to fill out some paperwork afterwards explaining why I needed the service.
Riding Xpress will also qualify you for the Clean Air Campaign’s Commuter Rewards Program, where several $25 gift cards are won monthly just for using clean commuting options regularly.
Yes, Xpress will cost more than C-Tran, and nobody wants to pay more for anything. But the reality is we all are paying more, regardless of how one chooses to commute.
Fares for the new routes are: $3 one-way and $5 round-trip; 20 rides for $45, 40 rides for $85, and 31-day unlimited ride passes are $80. Riders can conveniently buy bus passes online, as well as at MARTA station Breeze machines or the GRTA offices in Peachtree Center. Xpress also provides a free transfer to MARTA and can accommodate up to two wheelchair passengers on its coaches.
Unfortunately this alternative does nothing to assist the needs of paratransit and elderly riders, so hopefully a solution will be worked out on their behalf soon.
This deal is a temporary fix to keep bus service running for those who need it. “The federal Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) funds that we will be using in part to operate these new routes will expire three years after each route begins service,” says GRTA’s Director of Communications William Mecke. “We will have to find a different source of operating funding when those funds expire.” At the last meeting, our BOC approved Resolution 2010-61 requesting that legislators introduce legislation at this year’s Georgia General Assembly to find ways to fully fund C-Tran in the future.