FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Freeholder H. James Polos,
Chair, Public Works and Transportation Committee
County to Expand Community Shuttle Program to Cranbury, Plainsboro
Fixed-route, affordable transportation to begin May 15
MAY 3, 2010 – Residents in the southern part of Middlesex County will soon be served by a new public bus service that will provide connections between the Borough of Jamesburg, Plainsboro Township and the Princeton Junction Rail Station in West Windsor Township.
“This new route represents a real step forward for residents of southern Middlesex County,” said Freeholder H. James Polos, Chairman of the Middlesex County Public Works and Transportation Committee, which developed and will operate the service. “Persons with and without access to a car will now have dependable, affordable transit to connect to local destinations and regional transit services. This also represents a great “green” initiative because it reduces vehicles on the road and helps us become a more sustainable county.”
The wheelchair accessible bus route, known as the M6 Jamesburg-Cranbury-Plainsboro Shuttle, will begin service on Saturday, May 15. It is the newest route developed under the Middlesex County Area Transit (MCAT) Community Shuttle program.
Five existing Community Shuttle routes, representing 20 percent of the total MCAT transportation program, currently carry over 60 percent of its more than 500,000 annual passenger trips.
Operated by the County of Middlesex, the route will serve residents of Jamesburg, Monroe, Cranbury and Plainsboro and West Windsor in Mercer County. The bus will provide connections to shopping, employment and medical destinations, including the Plainsboro Health Campus that will be the site of a variety of health and wellness facilities, including University Medical Center of Princeton at Plainsboro (the acute-care hospital of Princeton HealthCare System), as well as the skilled nursing facility known as Merwick Care Center, which is scheduled to open at the end of this summer.
Pam Hersh, Princeton HealthCare System vice president for Government and Community Affairs, said the new bus route will play a key role in the successful operation of the new hospital and the other health facilities on the campus. “The availability of dependable bus service linking labor markets and patients from the southern portion of Middlesex County will be most beneficial to our new facility. Many residents in the region lack easy access to automobile transportation. Others just choose not to use automobile transportation in keeping with personal environmental ethics. This bus service enhances the “green” quality of our new campus, which already has gained a national reputation for its sustainable qualities,” she said.
Plainsboro Township Mayor Peter Cantu, who has worked closely with New Jersey Transit Corporation to expand local bus services in Plainsboro, noted the County service will complement NJ Transit services focusing on points south and west of Plainsboro Village.
“The new route will provide an incentive for Plainsboro residents to use transit for reaching local destinations while offering connections to NJ Transit regional rail and bus services,” Cantu said.
The M6 will operate on a 60-minute frequency of service, Monday through Saturday, from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. The route will begin at Veterans Park in Jamesburg and will serve the village centers of Cranbury and Plainsboro, as well as adult communities in Monroe Township.
Funding for the route will come from a U.S. Department of Transportation New Freedom Grant, with a 50 percent matching grant from the County.
There is a suggested one-way fare of $1 for the general public and 50 cents for older persons, people with disabilities and children under 12.
For more information, including route maps and schedules, contact MCAT at (732) 745-7456 or visit the Transportation Department page on the County Web site at http://co.middlesex.nj.us.