RBA to launch Lake County express bus to Chicago

Round-trip ticket will cost $15, leave from Dyer
2010-01-20T11:55:00Z RBA to launch Lake County express bus to ChicagoBy Keith Benman - keith.benman@nwi.com, (219) 933-3326 nwitimes.com

The Northwest Indiana Regional Bus Authority plans to launch its EasyGo express bus service from Lake County to Chicago in early February.

Two buses will depart each morning from the park-and-ride lot at the intersection of 213th Street and Calumet Avenue in Dyer, RBA Executive Director Tim Brown said. It is also looking to add a stop in Schererville. There will be two evening departures from stops in Chicago's Loop.

One-way tickets will cost $7.50 and round-trip tickets will cost $15. Those tickets can be bought on the bus by credit or debit card.

The RBA also is establishing an e-commerce Web site for buying 20-ride passes for $135 and monthly passes for $240, Brown said. That e-commerce site will be available at easygochicago.org in early February.

The RBA will have a ribbon-cutting for the inaugural run of its EasyGo express bus to downtown Chicago at 10 a.m. Wednesday from Dyer Fire Station No. 2 at 213th Street and Calumet Avenue. But it will be a week or more until the regular service is up and running.

Two years ago, the RBA helped establish the ChicaGo Dash express bus service from Valparaiso to downtown Chicago, which is funded by the Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority and operated by the city of Valparaiso.

The Valparaiso service has struggled to attract riders, with ridership hovering around several dozen per day.

The new EasyGo express bus service in Lake County will be funded for two years with $688,000 in federal stimulus money, Brown said. The RDA is also kicking in about $280,000.

The Free Enterprise System bus company of Jeffersonville, Ind., is providing buses and drivers under a contract with the RBA.

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