Since the inception of the Park-n-Ride, GCRTA has provided express service to our riders for the better part of the last 20 years. However, with the Covid-19 pandemic, the GCRTA system experienced decreases in ridership, not only to the Park-n-Ride but to bus, train and trolley services. March 24, 2020 marks the day that the Park N’ Ride service to Westlake, North Olmsted and Strongsville were suspended until further notice. This was in accordance with Governor’s “Stay at Home” order. During this “stay at home” order, many downtown office workers were not commuting into the city and instead began working remotely. GCRTA recommended riders only take the bus or train for essential trips during this time.
After 139 days of suspended service, August 10, 2020, the Park-n-Ride vehicles finally rode back out into service. This was done in preparation for the fall service change and is welcomed news for riders as we all adjust to a “new normal”. GCRTA is excited to welcome riders back to the Park-n-Ride and would like to remind riders of our commitment to providing a Safe, Reliable, Clean and Courteous service as we move through the Covid-19 Pandemic and beyond. (RTA Cleaning Procedures) Additionally, to show our appreciation, a welcome back event was held at each Park-n-Ride facility to distribute masks to riders. Inside each kit was a reusable mask, CDC instructions for proper use and wear, hand sanitizer, and information on the RTA CLE mobile ticketing app. This was done in addition to the Need a Mask, Take a Mask campaign to bolster the efforts of getting all riders to wear a mask while using the service.[EC1]
Customers were excited to be back on the Park-n-Ride and had the opportunity to express that to staff and media alike. Many riders were happy to share how long they had been waiting to ride once again or their journeys to work each day during the time away. They also had the opportunity to board our new MCI fleet, which was introduced in late February, just weeks before the temporary suspension of service. Equipped with Wi-Fi, reclining seats, footrests and other amenities, we’re positive that riders had a comfortable first day back on the service, and are ready to get back in the groove of a relaxing commute to and from the downtown area during regular weekday service. (http://www.riderta.com/routes/Bus/Park-N-Ride)