Fresh off a three-month experiment that used small, electric-powered shuttles to connect Decaturites with a new Publix Super Market, the DeKalb County city has launched a beefed-up transportation system that loops in many more destinations on a permanent basis while remaining free of charge, officials say.
The City of Decatur and the Decatur Downtown Development Authority began a new shuttle service last month—the GoDecatur Circulator, it’s called—that allows residents to catch one of two, 12-passenger vehicles on select weekdays.
Stops include popular destinations such as Publix (a vital source of groceries following Baby Kroger’s closure last year), Legacy Park, and Oakhurst, plus a YMCA, post office, and CVS.
The GoDecatur Circulator buses were already in the city’s fleet, owned by the parks and recreation department. They run continuously on what’s considered a baseline schedule, for now: from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday and Wednesday. That’s when the earlier pilot program indicated that rider demand around Decatur is strongest.
“Unlike the pilot program with Let’s Ride and Publix, this program is intended to be a permanent fixture,” city spokesperson Adam Schick tells Urbanize Atlanta. “It also has the potential to expand in the future, depending on demand.”
Shirley Baylis, Decatur’s business development manager, says GoDecatur Circulator stops are split nearly evenly among businesses offering goods and services and residential locations to serve the broad needs of patrons. The route was also designed to reach all five of Decatur’s commercial districts, Baylis noted.
The service is expected to be a particular hit with Decatur seniors who relied on the city’s GO60+ shuttle that ran prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We heard loud and clear from our residents that easy access to a comprehensive circulator shuttle was a priority,” Andrea Arnold, Decatur’s city manager, said in a recent announcement, “so this marriage between the GO60+ shuttle and our recent supermarket transportation is another critical step toward fulfilling one of the core goals of the city’s 2020 strategic plan.”
When running, the GoDecatur Circulator shuttles service the 15 stops listed below on a continuous loop. Find more info on the schedule and route here.
- (A) Decatur Recreation Center, 231 Sycamore St.
- (B) Philips Tower, 218 E. Trinity Place
- (C) Harmony Park, 630 East Lake Drive
- (D) Oakview Walk, 1111 Oakview Road
- (E) Oakhurst Recreation Center, 450 East Lake Drive
- (F) Oliver House, 1450 Commerce Drive
- (G) Park Trace Apartments, 700 Atlanta Ave.
- (H) US Post Office, 520 W. Ponce de Leon Ave.
- (I) Commerce Square / CVS Shopping Center, 225 W. Ponce de Leon Ave.
- (J) Clairemont Oaks, 441 Clairemont Road
- (K) YMCA, 1110 Clairemont Road
- (L) Town Square Condos / Pure Service Station, 249 E. Ponce de Leon Ave.
- (M) Publix / Sam’s Crossing, 2720 E. Ponce de Leon Ave.
- (N) Columbia Residences, 590 E. Freeman St.
- (O) Legacy Park, 500 S. Columbia Drive
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