Metro is about to get more use out of the Riverfront Transit Center. The underground bus staging area will be opened for parking and some bus service starting March 1.
Brandy Jones is vice president for external affairs for Metro. She says the transit authority has contracted with ABM to operate the center as a parking garage.
"We have been certainly looking for ways to make using public transit easier and more convenient, and also looking at how to better use the RTC for more transit options," Jones says. "We came up with the idea of, here are two routes: one that's a shuttle service through Downtown. And then another route that goes out to Kenwood and near one of the universities."
Route 85 travels along the riverfront, and through Downtown. The other is Metro Plus, which goes to Kenwood.
The Riverfront Transit Center was built as Fort Washington Way was under construction. It cost about $18 million, and was dedicated in May 2003. It has been largely unused since then, although Jones says for a number of years, charter buses have used the facility during games and events at the stadiums.
The RTC was used during the Blink festival in 2019. Jones says over the four nights, about 14,000 people took Metro shuttles which terminated in the RTC. "We really wanted to take advantage of that and open it up to more opportunities."
Parking will be managed by ABM and will cost $85 a month. Jones says there are 203 spaces.
Monthly rates in the nearby Central Riverfront Garage range from $145 to $170 a month.