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The newspaper of The Johns Hopkins University October 11, 2004 | Vol. 34 No. 7
Ready to Ride

Checking out the first bus to arrive is Sgt. Carrie Bennett of Homewood Security, who acts as a liaison with commuters and helps keep the shuttles on schedule. She's also a regular passenger, using the shuttle to get to class in East Baltimore.

For 14,000 weekly riders of Hopkins shuttles, the trip is about to get better

By Greg Rienzi
The Gazette

The fleet, or part of it, has come in. The first three of a new fleet of 10 sleek and passenger-friendly Homewood-JHMI shuttles have arrived and will go into service in the coming weeks. The others are expected to be in operation by late November.

The new shuttles, operated by the Yellow Bus Company, feature air conditioning, comfortable seating and 47-seat capacity, with room for an additional 11 standees. Four are equipped with lifts for wheelchair riders, which reduces capacity for these buses to 37 seated passengers plus standees.

The new buses offer increased capacity and comfort over the existing fleet of vehicles, which have been in operation since 1998. Also, the new shuttles are expected to be less maintenance-dependent than their predecessors, according to Lt. George Kibler, Homewood Security's transportation coordinator. All the new shuttles feature emission gas reduction, which burns fuel cleaner internally, allowing fewer pollutants to be released into the atmosphere.

And they'll be easy to spot: They're white with dark blue and gold trim and feature prominent Johns Hopkins signage on the sides.

The Yellow Bus Company currently has 10 Homewood-JHMI shuttles that transport passengers to and from the Homewood, JHMI and Peabody campuses. Johns Hopkins has three other contracted shuttle services routes: Eastern to Homewood and Homewood to the Stieff Silver Building, which contains School of Engineering labs and offices, also operated by the Yellow Bus Company; and one route, Eastern to the JHMI campus, operated by Broadway Services.

The Johns Hopkins shuttle program began in the mid 1970s and in recent years has been experiencing gradual growth annually. Today, the shuttle system carries approximately 14,000 passengers weekly. Shuttle use is free, provided that passengers show university or Johns Hopkins Hospital identification.

In addition to the new fleet, planning continues for the eventual shift of Homewood's shuttle transportation hub from Shriver Hall to the corner of 33rd and St. Paul streets, when Charles Commons, the JHU-owned mixed-use complex, is completed two years from now. The new hub, Kibler said, will enhance accessibility for the riders, most of whom reside in the nearby communities.

The service, he said, offers an essential link from the Homewood campus and nearby communities to East Baltimore and Mount Vernon.

"The JHMI shuttles provide service for thousands of weekly riders," he said. "They offer Hopkins affiliates a cost-free and convenient alternative to the limited and expensive parking options available in the Mount Vernon and East Baltimore areas."

The cost of the Homewood-JHMI shuttle system is shared between the university's Baltimore-based academic divisions and the hospital.

For more information on the Homewood-JHMI shuttle system, including schedules and stops, go to


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