Metrobus expands late-night service as city officials relax COVID-19 restrictions

Media Credit: Photo Illustration by Sydney Walsh | Photographer

Metrobus ridership in May was higher than any other month during the pandemic and reached 50 percent of pre-pandemic ridership levels, according to the WMATA release.

By Jun 5, 2021 8:06 PM

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority will expand late-night Metrobus service this weekend.

Buses on 36 Metro routes will operate until 2 a.m. for seven days a week starting Sunday after late-night service was halted in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a WMATA release. The release states that regional officials’ recent relaxations of COVID-19 restrictions allow for the expansion of the bus service.

“The return of late-night bus service coincides with the region’s pandemic recovery as COVID-19 restrictions are lifted and the region prepares to fully reopen,” the release states. “In addition, Metro will add more frequent service and restore more routes as part of service improvements to more than 60 routes.”

The release also states that Metro will increase the frequency of service to more than 60 routes, putting Metrobus service to 85 percent of pre-pandemic levels. Metrobus ridership in May was higher than any other month during the pandemic and reached 50 percent of pre-pandemic ridership levels, according to the release.

The expansion of service also comes as the WMATA board looks to potentially decrease fares and expand service for buses and rail even further in an effort to draw riders back to the Metro following the pandemic.

This article appeared in the June 11, 2021 issue of the Hatchet.

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