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March 10, 2017

METRO Breez commuter bus expands to Brunswick

Photo / Tim Greenway
Photo / Tim Greenway
Greg Jordan, general manager of Greater Portland Metro Transit, sees mass transit as a solution to labor shortages, providing affordable transportation.

Brunswick's town council approved a two-year pilot project extending the Greater Portland Transit District's METRO Breez commuter service from Portland to Brunswick.

The pilot program, which launched last June, includes stops in Freeport, Yarmouth and Falmouth.

Last fall, Greg Jordan, general manager of Greater Portland Metro Transit, told Mainebiz the service is on track to meet its ridership goal of 30,000 boardings per year. In addition to freeing up parking spaces and reducing traffic congestion, Jordan told Mainebiz that METRO Breez has the potential to help ease one of the problems that employers often cite as a contributor to their chronic labor shortages: consistent and affordable transportation for workers.

The Forecaster reported that the Brunswick council's 6-3 vote reversed an earlier decision to decline joining the pilot program.

Its interest was rekindled, the newspaper reported, after Bowdoin College said it would contribute $10,000 each year. Brunswick agreed to pay about $33,000 for 2017-2018, and almost $43,000 for 2018-2019.

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