Academy Bus has expanded service on more than half of its commuter routes between New Jersey and New York City.
The additional service on eight of its 17 routes starting this month came after the company restored commuter service to Wall Street in New York City via Jersey City in January.
“Despite a slow return to normalcy in commuter ridership in the months immediately following the COVID-19 pandemic, our decision to expand service reflects the significant increase in ridership on our most important routes,” said Francis Tedesco, CEO of Academy Bus, according to Metro. “Academy’s commuter routes serve thousands of customers each day, and the added service on these New Jersey/New York City routes shows we are acknowledging the needs of our riding public along some of these most in-demand lines.”
The expanded service will enhance routes connecting central New Jersey to various points in Manhattan, including Wall Street and the Port Authority.
The weekday bus service from New Jersey includes routes from the Jersey Shore area, multiple routes originating at the PNC Banks Art Center, and from Park and Ride locations and rest areas on the New Jersey Turnpike, Garden State Parkway and Route 36.
Ridership is returning
Academy Bus’ expansion comes as other private bus companies have been forced to reduce or stop services because of ridership decline.
Last month, DeCamp Bus Lines announced it would end its New York City commuter service in April. The 153-year-old New Jersey-based company says its ridership never returned after the pandemic.
Throughout the pandemic, Academy continued to provide its comprehensive commuter service throughout the region, ensuring that those riders, especially health care and essential workers, could continue to get to and from their workplaces, Tedesco told roi-nj.com.
“When many employers shifted to a remote work situation, we made the decision to curtail service due to decreased demand,” Tedesco told the publication. “Now, as COVID transitions to more of an endemic virus and increased demand for our daily commuter service continues to return, it was natural that we meet that increased ridership volume with restoration of additional departures on this important bus route.”