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People upset after bus service eliminated to portion of South Huntsville

After a study showed some routes were underused, the city eliminated a portion of 37 routes.

Posted: Jul 9, 2019 5:45 PM
Updated: Jul 9, 2019 10:42 PM

After a study showed some Huntsville bus routes were underused, the city eliminated a portion of 37 routes.

Some people in South Huntsville are upset after learning about the cuts. City officials are encouraging those who need help to contact them.

WAAY 31 spoke with one person who said he has no idea how he's going to get around now.

We were told two city buses used to run along a route that took people to popular shopping areas, the medical district and even to work for some. Now, this route and 36 others are gone, leaving many people without any transportation.

"First, we were all excited. They were going to add Saturday service, but they gave it with one hand and took it away with the other, didn't say a word about it," said Cameron Pyle, a South Huntsville bus rider.

Cameron Pyle is a retired veteran who used to ride the bus daily, but after the city eliminated his bus route in South Huntsville, it's disrupted his routine.

"Get my wife on that, get back to the station, take the number 5 bus, bring us right back to Walmart. I'd put her in a wheelchair and wheel her home," he said.

As of July 1st, the city says the number five bus route was eliminated due to low ridership in the South Huntsville area. This is in part because of the transit system upgrading its services with new bus routes where more riders are actively using the bus.

Pyle thinks something else could be done.

"Take one number 5, and have it run every 2 hours since, because that's a 2-hour trip," he said.

Since he first found out about the issue, he has reached out to his city council member and someone at public transportation.

The only bus that is able to come to his home now is the Handi-Ride service for those who are disabled and are over the age of 65, but Pyle doesn't qualify for any of these.

"I feel disenfranchised. I'm not allowed to participate anymore because I can't get there from here," he said.

The director of transportation services said the city will revisit the study every year on July 1st for changes to bus service in various areas. He said ridership depends on demand, so if more people want or need the service, they'll make sure to make something happen.

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