Pace Bus - Press Release - PACE ADDS SERVICE TO I-55 EXPRESS ROUTES EFFECTIVE APRIL 9

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PACE ADDS SERVICE TO I-55 EXPRESS ROUTES EFFECTIVE APRIL 9

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 29, 20124:00:00 PM
Media Release Office: (847) 228-4295
Contact: Patrick Wilmot (847) 228-4295

Ridership gains on bus on shoulders routes result in more service and schedule changes to accommodate increased demand

To accommodate increased ridership on Pace routes 755 and 855, Pace is adding new service and modifying the schedules on routes 755 and 855, effective April 9. Route 755, which operates between the southwest suburbs and the Illinois Medical District and the University of Illinois-Chicago, will be extended to Union Station and some trips will have minor schedule changes. Route 855, which links the southwest suburbs, the Loop and North Michigan Avenue will have an additional inbound trip during the morning rush and an additional outbound trip during the evening. Some trips will also have schedule changes.

The two routes carry a combined daily average of 500 passengers per day based on ridership in February, 2012. Route 855 accounts for 425 of those trips- an increase of 67% versus February, 2011. Route 755s 75 average daily riders is an increase of 120% over the prior February. The Bus on Shoulders Pilot Project- a cooperative effort involving Pace, the Illinois Department of Transportation, the Regional Transportation Authority and the Illinois State Police- began November 14, 2011, and has reduced travel times and improved on time performance. In 2010 through mid-2011, only about 68% of trips on routes 755 and 855 arrived at their destinations on time. Since the pilot project began, on time performance averages 92%. "The results so far have been very encouraging, and that's a testament to the hard work put in by the agencies involved and the commuters who are saving time and money by using transit on one of the region's most congested highways," said Pace Chairman of the Board Richard Kwasneski. "IDOT deserves a great deal of credit for their efforts to keep the shoulder free of debris, which has ensured safe, smooth operations." Kwasneski stressed that safety has been the principal concern throughout the project and added that neither route has had a traffic accident since the project began.

The extension of Route 755 to Union Station is planned to improve access to the west Loop and may provide an additional, potentially more convenient option for some passengers currently using Route 855 for travel to the Loop. Connections can be made at Union Station to several CTA bus routes traversing downtown Chicago.

The new inbound trip on Route 855 departs Plainfield at 6:37am with stops in Romeoville and the Pace Old Chicago Park-n-Ride in Bolingbrook en route to Chicago. The new outbound trip departs Superior and Michigan at 4:40pm and makes all stops en route to Plainfield.

The scheduling changes on both routes generally involve timing changes of between 5-10 minutes on select trips. In one case, a trip making one less stop en route to Chicago. For example, the Route 855 trip currently starting at the Pace Canterbury Park-n-Ride in Bolingbrook at 5:51am will now depart at 6:01am and no longer stop at the Burr Ridge Park-n-Ride. Service from Burr Ridge remains on four other trips toward downtown. It is strongly recommended that riders read the passenger notices posted on buses and Paces website to determine how or if their trips are affected. New printed schedules will be available on buses and are posted with the passenger notice at www.pacebus.com.

One-way fares for both routes will remain $4.00. Parking at each of the Park-n-Ride lots in the suburbs is free.

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