Eastern Wake bus lines expected by fall

Posted June 25, 2009 6:50 p.m. EDT
Updated June 25, 2009 7:20 p.m. EDT

— Two regional bus routes being considered could connect Zebulon, Wendell and Knightdale to downtown Raleigh by as early as September.

The area is growing quickly and with new highways more closely connected then ever before.

"There is a lot of travel demand in that corridor, especially coming from that area into downtown Raleigh," said Erik Landfried, a service planner with Triangle Transit.

The Triangle Transit Board of Trustees still has to vote on the new service in July, but Triangle Transit is planning the two lines, likely using CAT buses, with one starting in Zebulon and going through Wendell.

The other line begins in Knightdale. Both would make stops at WakeMed and at Moore Square in downtown Raleigh.

From there, riders can connect to other Triangle locations.

"It opens up opportunities for jobs, for social services or even just recreational or shopping opportunities," Landfried said.

Knightdale Mayor Russell Killen says mass transit is needed to help guide the growth of his town. But he says the eastern part of the county really needs circulator buses that pick people up around town instead of the current park-and-ride plan being considered.

"What we're talking about is a good start, but not what we need at the end of the day for the town," Killen said.

Zebulon, Wendell and Knightdale would each have to pay about $20,000 for operating costs. Local leaders say it is an investment in a better way of life.