4/17 UPDATE: Tonight's meeting is from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Tidewater Community College, in the Norfolk Student Center, at 310 Granby Street.
NORFOLK -- Hampton Roads Transit will host two public meetings in Norfolk in April to get public comment on the proposed elimination of local bus routes 16 and 17.
The proposal follows a decision by the Norfolk City Council to discontinue funding for the two routes because of low ridership.
Rt. 16 provides service to Old Dominion University and the Tide. The average weekday ridership for Rt. 16 is 374 people, according to HRT spokesman Tom Holden, compared to an average of 1,417 on the Norfolk route. On Saturday, the average ridership on Rt. 16 is 270 people and on Sunday it's 105.
Elimination of the Rt. 16 will still leave the university and the light rail system with two local routes - the 2 and 4, Holden said.
Dedra Bell works at ODU and uses Rt. 16 daily. She's surprised HRT wants to eliminate the route because she says there's always people waiting to catch that bus.
Bell says she's willing to fight to keep Rt. 16 because she relies on it so heavily. Bell says she will have to use Rt. 2 if they eliminate 16.
Rt. 17 is sometimes known as the "NET” or “Downtown Connector” and runs parallel to the Tide on Granby Street. It's weekday ridership averages 717 people. On Saturday the average is 239 and Sunday is 110.
The meetings are as follows:
Monday, April 14, 6 - 7:30 p.m., Park Place Multi-purpose Center, 606 W. 29th Street
Thursday, April 17, 6 - 7:30 p.m., Tidewater Community College-Norfolk Student Center, 310 Granby Street
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