On Monday, January 11, 2016, The Rapid hosted a celebration at the new Mary Free Bed YMCA featuring representatives from Cascade Township, Mary Free Bed, and Teleperformance USA to recognize their efforts to extend Rapid Route 28 east into Cascade Township.
Speaking at the event were community stakeholders including Rob Beahan of Cascade Township, Maria Besta of Mary Free Bed, Dot Tissue of Teleperformance USA, Andy Page of the Mary Free Bed YMCA, and Peter Varga of The Rapid. Each shared their thoughts about the economic and community impact that the new service extension will have on area residents and employers.
The Cascade Township Board approved a three-year trial of a bus service extension on 28th Street in October 2015, which will cost approximately $400,000 annually. The extension of Route 28 will give passengers direct access to the Cascade Meijer location, Walmart, and the newly opened Mary Free Bed YMCA. Route 28 now extends into Cascade Township via 28th Street to the Cascade Center just across Cascade Road Drive with a loop down Patterson to Burton and Kraft. The new service will run every half hour on weekdays, and every hour on Saturdays and Sundays.
“We are currently in the process of hiring 100 new employees, several of which are disabled and/or didn’t have reliable transportation,” she said. “Having the bus line extension has opened so many doors, not just for Teleperformance USA, but for the community as a whole, ” said Dot Tissue, Human Resource Manager at Teleperformance USA in regard to the opportunities the new bus extension will bring to current and future employees.
Expanding service to Cascade Township also opens the door to GO!Bus ADA paratransit service for the area. This shared ride, advanced reservation mobility option will be an important piece of transportation for those seeking to travel to Cascade Township destinations.
“The new Rapid bus route is making it possible for those we serve through Mary Free Bed to have opportunities and independence. To be able to independently use public transportation instead of relying on others opens so many doors to our participants and wheelchair athletes by offering the same endless possibilities as their peers,” Mary Besta said.
Have you had a chance to ride Route 28 into Cascade Township?