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MDOT MTA preserves Core Bus service, reducing Commuter Bus and Marc service

Posted at 2:57 PM, Sep 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-01 06:59:50-04

BALTIMORE — Following public comment and feedback from local jurisdictions, MDOT MTA announced that Core Bus service adjustments proposed Sept. 1 will not be implemented.

Core Local Bus and MobilityLink service will continue to operate on current schedules, while Commuter Bus and MARC service will begin operating at reduced levels on Nov. 2.

As MDOT MTA works to meet budgetary constraints amid the fiscal impact of COVID-19, the agency will continue to prioritize transit service for core riders, especially transit dependent households.

Data outlines how ridership on commuter services continues to rebound slower than expected.

In the fourth week of September, ridership across all MDOT MTA transit modes was down 60% overall, with MARC down 89%, Commuter Bus down 87% and Core Local Bus down 51%.

The public can access a full list of the ridership figures for MARC at this link and for every Commuter Bus route at this link.

The MARC and Commuter Bus temporary changes include reducing service frequency while retaining the overall span of service on each route, as is implemented on holiday and snow schedules.

Beginning Monday, November 2, MDOT MTA will resume the following service levels, which were in place at the height of the COVID-19 health emergency:

  • MARC: will operate on an enhanced “R” service schedule service.
  • Commuter Bus: all routes will operate on a “S” schedule service with the following two exceptions:
    • Route 201service from Gaithersburg to Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport will operate only the odd numbered trips on both the Weekday and Weekend/Holiday schedules; and
    • Route 320 – service from Columbia to Baltimore will operate regular service.
  • Local Bus: No changes - all Express Bus routes and LocalLinks 38 and 92 remain suspended.

Top officials from Anne Arundel County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, and Howard County joined together to issue the following statement regarding MTA's announcement to reverse major cuts to the Maryland Transit Administration:

“We’re pleased that the state has reversed their decision to balance the budget on the backs of our most vulnerable residents. While we understand the significant budget challenges caused by the pandemic, the proposed cuts would have only caused further harm to our residents who are already bearing the brunt of this crisis. Moving forward, we must continue to fight for more state funding to reverse generations of underinvestment in transportation across our entire region.”