Roanoke Advocacy Group hopes to improve public transportation

Published: Feb. 2, 2023 at 11:54 PM EST
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - The Bus Riders of Roanoke Advocacy Group began its work in February 2022 and met Thursday night to discuss how they want to improve public transportation in the Star City.

“To have a great city, you must have great transportation,” said Cyndi Jones.

“We want to put Roanoke back on the map transportation-wise, because right now it is lagging behind other cities like Lynchburg and Richmond,” said Kate Wooley.

The group has a handful of ways they’d like to see operations improve.

“We talked about peak service, which was a program before COVID. That increased the frequency of buses during peak service hours, rush hours, when people were using the buses most frequently. That got cut during COVID and now all the buses come only once an hour, we would like that to come back,” said Wooley.

“We would like better bus stops, like safe bus stops, we would like shelter bus stops where people can sit in a shelter, not on the ground,” said Jones.

The group has taken its concerns to city leaders and is hopeful change will happen.

“We’re still waiting to see if they’ll implement the things that we’ve asked them to, but we hope it’ll go really well,” said Wooley.

“We want to be the trailblazers, we want to be the best of the best. We want the best, because our community deserves it,” said Jones.

Though the group feels they have been heard by city leaders, they want to see action.

“There’s more to be said and more to be done. So just because you hear us? But are you listening? We want them to not only listen but hear us and take action,” said Jones.

Saturday, Feb. 4, the group will join city organizations for “Celebrate Transit Equity Day/Rosa Parks’ Birthday” at the Third Street Bus Station starting at 1 p.m. and all day, Valley Metro rides will be free for everyone.