Beginning Thursday, START will make an early transition from winter to spring bus service as a result of reduced demand following the closure of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. The move is also an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

“START understands and (apologizes for) any inconveniences that this early transition to Spring service schedule may cause,” a press release states, “and appreciates the community’s understanding as we continue to monitor the best way to safely service the community.”

One of the main changes is to the Teton Village routes, which during peak ski season account for nearly 100 daily trips. Village service will now be reduced to only the Green Line, which will run from 5:58 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Town shuttle service will be cut slightly. The first shuttle will run from 6:05 a.m. to 8:49 p.m., and the second from 6:20 a.m. to 8:37 p.m.

There will be no changes to Americans with Disabilities Act service, or to the commuter runs to Teton Valley and Star Valley.

The Jackson Town Council and Teton County Board of County Commissioners normally approve changes to bus service. But amid the “rapidly evolving situation” presented by COVID-19, that power will be left to Town Manager Larry Pardee and START Director Darren Brugmann, allowing them to react quickly to changes in demand, like the resort’s closure.

START asks that riders maintain social distancing on the bus, and not ride when they are sick. They also ask that riders “practice excellent personal hygiene before, during and after you ride the bus.”

“START Bus is taking proactive measures in response to the pandemic COVID-19,” the press release states. “START Bus is working closely with local health organizations and will continue to follow best practices as recommended by health officials.

For more information on the new schedules, visit STARTBus.com or contact START at 307-733-4521.

START bus cleaning

Vikki Howell sanitizes a START bus Tuesday at the START bus barn. More attention is being given to cleaning entry and exit points as well as passenger areas in order to curb the spread of COVID-19.

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Contact Cody Cottier at 732-5911 or town@jhnewsandguide.com.

Cody Cottier covers town and state government. He grew up with a view of the Olympic Mountains, and after graduating Washington State University he traded it for a view of the Tetons. Odds are the mountains are where you’ll find him when not on deadline.

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