If you rely on taking the bus to Lakewood Ranch, you will soon need to find another way as Manatee County will no longer service the area beginning Nov. 12.
Instead of continuing onto to Lakewood Ranch Boulevard and LECOM, the State Road 70 bus service will end at the Wal-Mart just east of Interstate 75. This is just one of a number of Manatee County Area Transit route modifications going into effect Nov. 12.
“The changes are part of MCAT’s continuing efforts to optimize service and improve frequency for the county’s core network of bus routes,” a news release states.
In July, the county commission approved the changes, which will allow certain routes to arrive more frequently. Route 3, which services Manatee Avenue/State Road 64, will begin operating with 30-minute frequency instead of the current 60-minutes. Route 3 will also no longer serve Blake Medical Center.
“We are better served building up those two corridors,” Bill Steele, transit division manager, said of the Manatee Avenue and Cortez Road routes in July. “At some time in the future, we will come back to Lakewood Ranch.”
For more information about the MCAT changes, call 941-749-7116. The new route schedules can be found at MCAT transfer stations as well as at mymanatee.org/mcat.
MCAT service changes beginning Nov. 12
- Route 3 (Manatee Avenue/State Road 64) will increase to 30-minute service frequency on Manatee Avenue and will no longer serve Blake Medical Center.
- Route 4 (9th Street East and West) will now serve Blake Medical Center. The eastbound portion of the route will now connect with Route 3 on Manatee Avenue via 59th Street West before returning to Blake via 51st Street West every hour.
- Route 6 (Cortez Road) will operate between Coquina Beach and DeSoto Station with 60-minute frequency.
- Route 9 (26th Street West) will no longer operate on Saturdays.
- Route 12 (State Road 70) will no longer serve Lakewood Ranch Boulevard or LECOM. The route will serve the State Road 70 corridor from DeSoto Station to the Wal-Mart, which is just east of Interstate 75, with 60-minute frequency.
- Route 99 will now end northbound service in downtown Bradenton. Service will continue to operate every 30 minutes between downtown Bradenton and downtown Sarasota along the U.S. 41 corridor, but the route will no longer directly serve Bay Shore Road, near the Ringling Museum in Sarasota.
- All Palmetto-area routes (Route 1, Route 13 and the North County ConneXion) will connect with the Downtown Bradenton Transfer Station. The southbound service on 8th Avenue West in Palmetto will also connect to the Downtown Bradenton Transfer Station.
- Anna Maria Island Trolley will operate every 30 minutes until 7:30 a.m. and then begin 20-minute frequency at 8 a.m.
Source: Manatee County government