VTrans Funds Three New or Expanded Public Transit RoutesMONTPELIER – The Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) has announced that it will grant three public transit providers a total of $350,000 so that they can fund new or expand popular public transit routes.The funding will establish new bus routes along Route 103 as well as Interstate 91. Expansion of an existing bus route will occur along Interstate 89. Many of the routes include stops at Park and Rides so commuters can easily access the service.”Improving Vermont’s public transportation system is one of our priorities,” said VTrans Secretary David Dill “These new routes are an important step in helping Vermonters not only maintain their independence but also save money as they can now use a bus to get to work, the hospital and even one of Vermont’s signature ski areas.”New or expanded routes include:* Expansion of the I-89er through Stagecoach Transportation Services. The increased service will reduce headways (bus wait time) from one hour to 30 minutes. In addition, the expansion will double the seating capacity on this very popular route, which begins in Randolph Center and travels south along Interstate 89 with stops at park & rides in both Randolph and Sharon on its way to Bethel, White River Junction and finally into Lebanon, NH. The service will include stops at the VA Hospital in White River as well as both Dartmouth College and Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon.* New service along Route 103 from Rutland through Ludlow to Bellows Falls and Springfield. This route will serve Okemo Mountain Resort on weekends during ski season. Service will be provided by a joint effort from Marble Valley Regional Transit District and Connecticut River Transit.* New service along I-91 from St. Johnsbury to White River Junction and then onto Lebanon, NH. Stopping at designated park and rides along the way as well as Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center. Service will be provided by Rural Community Transportation.When new service will begin, as well as exact bus schedules, are still being developed. Travelers should go to connectingcommuters.org for links to each public transit service provider who can provide more detail.