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Williamsburg Area Transit Authority held its monthly Board of Directors meeting Wednesday in which new changes for the Green Line were announced.
The Green Line, which services the campus of the College of William and Mary during the school year, will now cease service at 10 p.m. every night of the week for the 2016-17 academic year.
Previously the Green Line ran until midnight on Friday and Saturday nights. Low numbers of riders after 10 p.m. on weekends was the impetus for the change.
Students can still show their school ID and receive free transportation on the Green Line during WATA’s new operating hours. William and Mary and WATA have had transportation service agreements in place since 2002, and both entities wished to revise the current agreement before the upcoming school year.
The Board also unanimously approved an exterior design for five new buses that are scheduled to join the fleet by March 2017. This new design will prominently feature WATA’s colors and logo, as well as contain more room for advertisements. WATA is also hoping to repaint existing buses with the new design.
“We would like our fleet to attract a professional image and be reflective of our brand,” said Todd Tyree, executive director of WATA. “Williamsburg has a reputation of being a beautiful place to visit and live and we want our bus fleet to reflect our community and values.”
These buses are part two of WATA’s four-phase plan to integrate newer buses into its fleet and will replace five buses of an older model, which will subsequently be retired. The first phase of these buses was introduced in January 2015, and both phases include the modern Gillig model, which is thirty feet long and features low floors.
According to a design memo provided by WATA, the newer buses will reduce down time and maintenance costs, and will be more fuel efficient and environmentally friendly.