The weather may not feel summery, but START officially makes the switch to its summer schedule Saturday.
The new schedule, which can be accessed in full at STARTBus.com, includes doubled summer service on the green line route that runs between the town of Jackson, the Stilson park-and-ride at the intersection of Highways 22 and 390, and Teton Village. In an effort to reduce traffic, the green line will run every 30 minutes instead of every hour, as it has in past summers.
The increased service will run through June 30, in what has been dubbed a “pilot program.” Whether the doubled line runs for the rest of the summer, through Sept. 29, depends on the ongoing town and county budgeting processes.
Teton County paid the full $52,000 cost of expanding the service from May 25 to June 30. Right now, Teton County’s proposed budget also includes the full $125,000 needed for START to continue to operate the expanded service for the whole summer, County Administrator Alyssa Watkins said. The county officially approves its final budget June 25.
The START Board has requested the increase in summer Teton Village and Stilson service for the past three years, START Director Darren Brugmann said, and it’s a goal of the 2015 Integrated Transportation Plan.
“Utilizing Stilson as a park/ride location is important to the transit system to enable persons to change commuting habits,” Brugmann said in an email. “Increased frequency is important to encourage this end. Removing cars and congestion continues to be a goal and [of] importance to the community — especially in the WY 22/390 corridor.”
On Monday, for Memorial Day, START will run only one commuter bus each way to Star Valley and Teton Valley, Idaho.