Additional shopping and movies have added riders to Douglas Area Rural Transit, manager Travis Lee said Friday.
Carson Valley’s public transit system has added stops at the Gardnerville Walmart and the Ironwood Center in Minden.
“I’ve heard more excitement about Ironwood, than I anticipated,” Lee said. “We’re starting to really see it increase, by adding Ironwood we picked up 4-5 people a day.”
That’s not bad when considering Douglas County’s public transit system provides an average of 1,900 rides a month.
Anyone may ride the bus for free until May 15, when the fare increases to $2 for riders and a $2 donation for seniors. Students with identification can ride for $1.
“When I initially set up the DART Express four years ago, we set up the routes so we could expand into these areas,” he said. “We wanted to connect the Ranchos and other outlying areas. Why not connect all of the main centers of commerce here so the community can have access to them?”
The bus runs from the Gardnerville Ranchos, to Minden and Gardnerville every day.
“It took some doing to get it done so quick,” he said. “Walmart was definitely going to be a stop. We’d heard at some of the meetings that it was difficult to get from the swim center to Ironwood.”
He said the bus drivers have been running the route, but they wanted to work out some kinks before making it public.
“We met with the staff members of the stores and the businesses on the route to encourage them to ride the bus to work,” he said. “It’s a good way to commute. We really hope we’ll get people to ride into work.”