(MURFREESBORO) Rover, the City's public transportation service, is adding Saturday Rover routes as another enhancement to customer service. The new weekend service begins Feb. 1, 2020.
Effective Saturday, February 1, Rover will begin operating three Saturday routes on Old Fort, Highland, and Mercury. The Saturday routes begin at 9 a.m. and end at 4:30 p.m. with the last round trip beginning at 3:45 p.m. Service will operate every 45 minutes. Complimentary Paratransit Services will operate during the same hours.
"We want to continue to provide effective and efficient service to riders of the Rover system," said Transportation Director Jim Kerr. "Offering Saturday service and recent enhancements to the fare payment system address customer requests and fulfills recommendations in the operational analysis."
Effective Monday, March 2, 2020, the following service changes will begin to help improve efficiency and safety:
- MALL DISTRICT ROUTE: The West Side Loop Route will be refined and combined with the Old Fort Route to form the new "Mall District" Route. This route will service Stones River Mall, The Avenue, the Social Security office, Target Shopping area, and the Salvation Army. The Mall District Route will be operated with 2 buses on 45-minute intervals, Monday through Friday-ONLY 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- GATEWAY ROUTE: The Gateway Route will be refined and routed to serve both sides of Broad St. between Medical Center Pkwy and Thompson Lane. It will continue to serve the Hope Clinic, St. Thomas Hospital, Murfreesboro Medical Clinic, and the Guidance Center. Gateway will continue operating Monday through Friday-ONLY 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
"As Murfreesboro continues to change and grow, it is important for Public Transit to change and grow with it," said Assistant Transportation Director Russ Brashear. "As such, the Mall District and Gateway routes will become "Fixed Stop" only. Eliminating the flag stop service will improve efficiency and safety for both riders and auto drivers."
- "Fixed Stops" for Improved Safety: Over 40 locations have been designated as official stops for these two routes--Mall District and Gateway. Drivers WILL NOT stop and pick-up anyone who is not at one of these designated stops. Passengers will also not be let off the bus anywhere except the official stop locations. If no one wants to board or deboard the bus, the driver will NOT stop. Nearly all the designated stops have an official "Rover Stops Here" sign where right-of-way distance permits it.
Please visit http://www.murfreesborotn.gov/1656/Bus-Route-Changes-Effective-March-2-2020 for maps and stop locations.
In June 2019, Rover implemented a new electronic fare system to improve customer service payment options. The new electronic fare system, called GENFARE, provides customers with easier cash and electronic payment transaction options. GENFARE accepts cash, coins, Single Ride Tickets, Daily Passes, and Multiple Day Passes.
The new fare media options, such as single-day passes, 7-day passes, and 31-day passes, came in response to public input on how Rover service could be enhanced through a comprehensive study of the Rover transportation service.
TDOT's Multimodal Division conducted a comprehensive operational analysis of the Rover system in 2017. The study included rider need for route service changes, Saturday and evening service, service to the Joe B. Jackson Blvd. industrial park area, and the need for electronic payment.
Rover currently operates a fleet of nine 23-passenger buses with front wheelchair ramps allowing for ease of boarding. The central hub is located at 222 W. Burton and is leased from the Murfreesboro Housing Authority.