Board of Aldermen votes to lure BoltBus

The Board of Aldermen voted Tuesday night to encourage the low-cost BoltBus to extend its services to New Haven.

Ward 22 Alderman Greg Morehead sponsored the measure, he said, in hopes of luring an inexpensive and eco-friendly means of transit to New Haven. Each of the present aldermen agreed with him, sending a clear message to the BoltBus line that the Elm City would welcome and support its business, though the final decision is left to the company itself.

“The city continues to be a leader in the region for promoting green technologies and alternative forms of transportation,” Morehead said as he introduced the proposal. “BoltBus combines the best of both by providing a public transportation model that takes cars off the road but also does not create an economic hardship.”

The principal selling point of the BoltBus is its low cost: Fares start at $1 and generally range from $5 to $25 for seats servicing cities across the eastern seaboard. Other draws include free high-speed wireless Internet and extended legroom, Morehead said. He said he began touting the BoltBus after seeing it advertised a month ago. New Haven’s demographics, including its large college-age population with connections across the East Coast, should make it a particularly attractive destination for BoltBus, Morehead added.

Currently, BoltBus lines run through New Haven as they travel between New York City and Boston. To Ward 21 Alderman Katrina Jones, a stop in New Haven is only logical.

“Why not give the residents here in New Haven the opportunity,” Jones said. “It’s all about choices.”

The City’s Office of Economic Development and Yale officials are currently working in tandem to attract the BoltBus line to New Haven, Morehead said. Still, Greyhound Lines spokesman Timothy Stokes said last week that he was unaware of any line of communication between the City and BoltBus, adding that BoltBus has no immediate plans to add a New Haven stop.

Also approved unanimously at the Tuesday meeting was a measure sponsored by Ward 23 Alderman Yusuf Shah to change the name of Frontage Road to honor the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Members of the board obtained over 900 signatures from residents favoring the change.

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