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540-443-1500 (M-F 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.)

 

Main St Spring

Fall 2020 Bus Service

Fall Service Updates


We know this fall will present many challenges for everyone. We have worked closely with our partners and the health department to develop a service level that will meet the needs of our riders and implemented prudent health and safety measures.

The service we currently provide has over 40 buses operating each day and most of our routes operate every 10 or 15 minutes during peak times in Blacksburg.

As the semester progresses, we will remain flexible and make service changes as appropriate. This page will be updated on a regular basis.


Do you have a question you’d like to see added to our FAQ’s? Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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FAQ's

Why does bus service end at 12:45 am on Friday and Saturday?

 We are ending service at 12:45 am on Friday and Saturday evenings in compliance with the Town of Blacksburg ordinance to close restaurants and other businesses to the public at midnight. Link to Ordinance 1942  (Posted 9/8/2020)

How can exposure to COVID-19 be limited when passengers are in close proximity to each other?

According to the CDC, transmission is unlikely in brief interactions of less than 15 minutes, even in close proximity. Fortunately, 90 percent of BT trips are leass than 15 minutes long and wearing a face covering will further decrease the chance of transmission. (Updated 9/8/2020)

I have a medical concern that prevents me from wearing a face covering, can I still ride the bus?

Our drivers will offer a mask or face shield to anyone that boards a bus without one. Out of an abundance of caution for our passengers and drivers a passenger will be asked to exit the bus if they refuse to wear a face covering or shield. (Posted 9/8/2020)

Are Hokie P's required to ride the bus?

No. As a way to minimize interactions between passengers and drivers Hokie Passports and fare payments will not be required for the remainder of the semester. (Posted 9/8/2020)

Has BT developed any projections about how many passengers will ride?

We planned for about 2/3 of our normal ridership and have set our passenger limits to reflect the same. (Updated 9/8/2020)

What service is BT providing this semester?

This semester we have 16 routes in Blacksburg, with most operating every 10 – 15 minutes during weekdays, which is about the same as last fall. This includes one new route, the South Main – Airport Rd. We’ve also added Saturday service to the CRC route and will start service at 9:30 am on Sundays (previously 11:30 am) on all routes. We will also provide fill-in buses to help with full buses to the extent that we have resources available. BT Access, and our Christiansburg service, the Go Anywhere and Commuter routes will operate as normal. (Posted 9/8/2020)

Can you put a bendy bus on every route to help with social distancing?

About one-fourth of our fleet are bendy buses, or articulated buses, which are assigned to the routes that traditionally have the highest ridership. We’ll continue to monitor ridership levels and adjust vehicle assignments as necessary. (Posted 8/6/2020)

Why don't you hire more Drivers?

We’re hiring! We hire drivers year-round and have been busy hiring and training many new drivers. We’re always looking for more drivers, so if you know someone looking for a job we start out at $13.35/hr with paid training and it makes a great part time job!(Updated 9/8/2020)

Why don't you buy more buses so crowding can be reduced?

On average, new buses take about 18 months to receive after placing an order. Securing the grant funding is typically the most time consuming part and is critical since buses cost upwards of $1 million each. (Posted 8/6/2020)

What passenger limits are currently in place?

We've set our passenger limits at approximately two-thirds of capacity for large buses and about one-third of capacity for smaller buses such as body-on chassis vans. At these levels we expect the ridership demand can be reasonably accommodated while still providing enough room on the bus for some separation among passengers. Even though there will not be six feet of physical distancing at all times, 90 pcercent of trips are less than 15 minutes in duration, and a number of other actions to lower the risk of exposure are being taken, including:

•  Cleaning and disinfecting of buses
•  Passengers and drivers are required to wear masks
•  Barriers have been installed to provide a separation between the driver and passengers

These measures have been reviewed by the New River Health Department and are subject to change based on the rate of COVID-19 cases locally, Governor’s Executive Orders, or decisions by VT that affect the demand for public transportation.(Updated 9/8/2020)

Does BT have off-peak travel times? Does BT have any recommended times to travel? e.g. times with the fewest passengers?

BT’s peak and off-peak times vary each day. On average the busiest time in a morning is 30 minutes before every class begins and in the afternoon the busiest time is 30 minutes after every class ends. As a general rule, there should be fewer riders outside of these times. Traveling during off-peak will also help reduce the risk of exposure. (Posted 6/30/2020)

Besides bus, what other commuting options are there?

While most major apartment complexes are located on the bus routes, many are also just a short walk or bike ride from campus. Information about the roamNRV bike share program can be found at gotchabike.com/roamnrv. Information about alternative transportation options offered by Virginia Tech, can be found at parking.vt.edu/alternative (Posted 6/30/2020)

Where can I find more information about Virginia Tech's operational plan?

www.vt.edu/ready (Updated 9/8/2020)

Where can I find more information about the guidelines for Forward Virginia?

www.virginia.gov/coronavirus (Updated 9/8/2020)

Will BT require everyone to wear face coverings while on the bus?

We require all passengers (and drivers) to wear a face covering while on the bus. If a passenger boards a bus without a face covering the driver will ask the passenger to wear one. Drivers will have a limited number of cloth face coverings available for those who don’t have one and face shieldds for those who are unable to wear a cloth face covering. Please be considerate to your fellow passengers to help prevent community spread. (Updated 9/8/2020)

What is BT doing to keep passengers and drivers safe?

In addition to cleaning and sanitizing our buses, we've also installed barriers to provide separation between the driver and passengers and require everyone to wear a face covering. We encourage passengers to follow Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines about how to protect themselves such as frequent hand washing. While BT has taken a number of actions to reduce the risk of exposure, we understand this will not meet everyone’s comfort level; we encourage you to look after yourself, and if needed seek alternate transportation options.(Updated 9/8/2020)

Fare Free


Fares are temporarily suspended until further notice. Boarding at the front door has resumed. 

Passenger Limit


We've set our passenger limits at approximately two-thirds of capacity for large buses and about one-third of capacity for smaller buses such as body-on chassis vans. At these levels we expect the ridership demand can be reasonably accommodated while still providing enough room on the bus for some separation among passengers. Even though there will not be six feet of physical distancing at all times, 90 pcercent of trips are less than 15 minutes in duration, and a number of other actions to lower the risk of exposure are being taken, including:

  • Cleaning and disinfecting of buses
  • Passengers and drivers are required to wear masks
  • Barriers have been installed to provide a separation between the driver and passengers

These measures have been reviewed by the New River Health Department and are subject to change based on the rate of COVID-19 cases locally, Governor’s Executive Orders, or decisions by VT that affect the demand for public transportation.

Health Commitment


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Face Coverings


Face coverings are required in all public places, including while riding a bus.Face Coverings Decal transparent

BT will have a limited number of masks available on buses for those that have been unable to locate a face covering. Please refer to the links below for more information from the CDC:

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