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Ribbon cutting held for shuttle linking SMART train to Larkspur Ferry

PIX Now - Morning Edition 6/21/24
PIX Now - Morning Edition 6/21/24 10:16

Transit officials have cut the ribbon on a new shuttle transiting riders between the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District Larkspur station and the Larkspur Ferry Terminal.

Offered through a partnership between SMART, the Transportation Authority of Marin and the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District, the SMART Connect Larkspur shuttle service launched June 6, according to SMART. The service is an alternative to the bicycle and pedestrian bridge connecting the station and the terminal.

On weekends, shuttle service extends to the Village and Town Center shopping malls in Corte Madera.

While service prioritizes trips between the station and the terminal, according to SMART spokesperson Julia Gonzalez, passengers may be picked up or dropped off anywhere along the route.

The shuttle runs Thursday through Sunday. On Thursdays and Fridays, the shuttle runs from 7 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. On Saturdays and Sundays, the shuttle runs from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The shuttle also meets southbound SMART trains and northbound ferries within five minutes of their arrival.

Seniors aged 65 and older and youth up to age 18 ride free. A one-way fare is $1.50 for adults and $0.75 for those with disabilities.

Prospective riders may book the shuttle through the Ride Pingo app, or by calling (800) 727-0279 or in-person with the driver. SMART officials urge passengers to book ahead of time, though.

The new shuttle is part of a yearlong pilot program. After one year, transit officials will reconvene to decide how to alter the service depending on the pilot's performance, Gonzalez said Thursday.

Since service first launched, the shuttle has been transiting about 45 riders per day on average, Gonzalez added.

"As with any newest service, we will need to evaluate how well it performs," Gonzalez said. "We feel confident that the shuttle is filling an important gap."

The new shuttle service serves as a convenient alternative to those who found walking the pedestrian bridge challenging, she added.

The ribbon-cutting event took place Thursday afternoon at the SMART Larkspur station at 600 Larkspur Landing Circle in Larkspur.

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