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Connect Transit trims service over driver shortage

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Staff
/
WGLT

Connect Transit doesn't have enough bus drivers to run all its routes, so Bloomington-Normal's public transit system said Wednesday it will reduce weekday frequency on some routes to weekend levels starting Oct. 9.

Late-night service on some routes also will go away some days, affecting Illinois State University students. The agency said a stable schedule is better than trying to do too much with the limited people available, and missing some trips.

Blue, purple, aqua, orange, and silver routes will operate once an hour instead of once every 30 minutes on weekdays. The yellow route will not operate peak service and will move from a 15-minute to 30-minute headway. Late night service on the yellow, green, and Redbird Express lines will not operate Thursday through Saturday.

General Manager David Braun said Connect Transit faces the same workforce shortages everyone else is facing, and more, adding, "We are further challenged by age and qualification requirements that many employers don’t have."

Braun said the transit system is advertising for drivers, offering signing bonuses, and has wages and benefits that provide excellent career opportunities.

WGLT Senior Reporter Charlie Schlenker has spent more than three award-winning decades in radio. He lives in Normal with his family.
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