Office of Communications and Media Relations | Sep 18, 2013
Intercity bus service connecting the upper and lower Valley will begin this September. Officials from the partnering cities, along with federal and state lawmakers, made the announcement at a recent ribbon cutting ceremony, in Brownsville.
The new transportation option for Rio Grande Valley residents is supported by a $1.4M federal grant. The grant award is part of the Federal Transit Administration's Section 5311 Non-urbanized Area Formula Grant Program, which provides states with funding for Intercity Bus Service. The City of Brownsville in partnership with Valley Transit Company, the City of McAllen, and the City of South Padre Island will utilize the funds to implement the express bus system, called Metro Connect. The orange colored buses are the same type models currently used by the McAllen and Brownsville transit systems. They are air conditioned and will offer WiFi service.
The awarded grant funds required a match of $313,222 (which is being provided by the City of Brownsville, the City of South Padre Island and the City of McAllen) for a total project cost of $1,896,680. Awarded funds will be utilized to acquire four buses and fund one year of operations for the regional service.
Metro Connect is expected to begin operations in mid to late September 2013 and plans to provide three bus lines: the green line connecting UTPA to McAllen, the red line connecting McAllen to Brownsville (with connections to VTC's Harlingen Terminal), and the blue line connecting Brownsville to South Padre Island.
Planned hours of operation are Monday through Sunday from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Download bus route information and schedules