380 Express Corridor Rides releases ridership numbers after first month

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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) -- The 380 Express Corridor Rides is meant to ease traffic as construction picks up on the I-380 / I-80 interchange project.

Now after being in service for a little over a month, we are finally getting a look at who is using it.

380 Express Corridor Rides received about 2,500 riders in October, a number that the East Central Iowa Council of Governments says so far they've been pleased with.

TV9 decided to go along for a ride-a-long and talk to passengers to find out why they decided to start using the service.

We started our route in downtown Cedar Rapids and boarded the bus at 7:20 a.m. last Friday.

It was quiet as Jesse Thomas was the only person to get off the bus and grab his bike.

Thomas lives in Iowa City and he started taking the 380-Express buses about a week ago.

Once he gets to Cedar Rapids he bikes six miles to Hiawatha in order to get to work.

"It's stressful driving up 380 every morning, I ride about 40 miles when I drive myself and with the 380 bus I can read my book and answer e-mails on the way," says Thomas.

The next stop, Kirkwood Community College seemed to have the most people boarding the bus.

Then we headed to Coralville and caught up with another passenger, Brittany Saxton.

Saxton rides the 380 Express bus from Coralville to Cedar Rapids for work and she started almost a month ago when her family experienced car trouble.

"I actually started because our transmission went out in our vehicle and after that, I just continued to ride it because I enjoyed the ride," says Saxton.

Between the 7:20 a.m. and 9:10 a.m. we only counted about 6 people during our ride.

Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids and Court Street in Iowa City seemed to be the busiest stops.

East Central Iowa Council of Governments who have partnered with the Iowa Department of Transportation on this project say the majority of people currently using the bus service are healthcare workers, University of Iowa employees, students, patients, and the general public.

Despite the lower number of riders we saw on Friday morning, 380 Express Corridor Rides services reports about a 20 percent increase of passengers each week and they expect that number to continue to grow as riders find out about the service.