State moves to expand bus service from suburbs into Atlanta

The Georgia Regional Transportation Authority (GRTA) votes to increase bus service from suburban counties to Atlanta and Perimeter Mall.

The GRTA board adopts a transit plan to expand the Xpress bus system.  By the end of 2016, new bus routes would connect Kennesaw to Atlanta and Sandy Springs.  The buses would take riders from the park-and-ride lot near Town Center mall to the Civic Center in Atlanta or the Perimeter Mall park-and-ride lot in Sandy Springs.

Other new Xpress routes would carry Gwinnett and Forsyth County residents to jobs at Perimeter Mall.

GRTA spokesman Matt Markham tells the Marietta Daily Journal, the cost of the additional bus routes would come out of the state authority's $24 million annual operating budget.

He says over the next few years, their goal is to provide both Cobb and Gwinnett County residents with a transit option to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

Cobb County Transportation Director Faye DiMassimo says increased service will help improve traffic overall.

All Xpress routes will be modified to improve on-time performance through downtown Atlanta.  Passengers would only have to wait 15 minutes between buses during peak commute times, down from 30 minutes today.