PVTA considering eliminating some Five College bus runs

Neal testifying at PVTA hearing in Amherst June 2017
The PVTA has announced that it is considering eliminating service on nearly two dozen routes, including some of the ones serving Five College campuses. The PVTA Advisory Board is holding hearings and taking public comments in late June and early July. They are to make a decision on July 19, with changes to take effect at the end of August, 2017. 

Routes being considered for elimination include the R39, traveling between Mount Holyoke, Hampshire and Smith; and the M40, an express run between Smith and UMass. Together they account for some 85,000 riders each year.

Five Colleges has partnered with PVTA and area towns since 1979 to subsidize these and other public transportation routes connecting the campuses. The campuses together pay more than $600,000 annually in support of Five College bus runs, which serve students, employees and community members, reducing pollution, the use of private vehicles and parking congestion. 

Several other PVTA routes used by students are being considered for reduction or elimination, including the R29, 34, 35, 46, B48 and the Tiger Trolley.

The campuses and consortium are developing a number of approaches for arguing against route reductions, particularly against abrupt changes made after students have registered for fall classes on campuses that they will need to travel to. So far Five College Executive Director Neal Abraham has met with the PVTA Administrator and testified at a public hearing in Amherst.

We encourage anyone who may be affected by these route eliminations to share their comments with the PVTA:
Attend a public hearing 
Email: comments@pvta.com
Call: 413-732-6248 x235
Write: Sandra Sheehan, Administrator, PVTA, 2808 Main St., Springfield, MA 01107

Public comments will be presented on July 19 to the PVTA Advisory Board. 

If any cancellations to Five College routes occur, the consortium will explore cost-effective alternatives to serve affected students.  

In the above photo, Five College Executive Director Neal Abraham gives testimony against PVTA route eliminations at a public hearing in Amherst on June 21.