The free bus service will give rides between Carytown, The Fan and Shockoe Bottom.
RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) -
A new free bus system, the Hop RVA, will give free rides for people who want to get from Carytown and the Fan to Shockoe Bottom.
Owners say the whole point of the new bus is to reduce the number of drunk drivers on the roads.
"It’s going to allow us to service more people and make sure more people are getting home and push that message to our community in Richmond, that it's OK to go out and rely on public transportation because we're going to be there for you,” said Jonathan Trainum, the owner of Napoleon Taxi and new owner of the Hop RVA.
“The largest number of drunk driving convictions is in the 21 to 24-year-old range so that's your just out of college group, they're going to the Bottom, they're going to the slip, they're going to the fan to have a good time. So this bus should really be able to help them,” said Janet Brooking, Drive Smart Virginia.
Virginia Nightline and Napoleon Taxi own the service. It's very similar to the "To Bottom and Back" bus system Richmond had until early 2013. The service that stopped after safety concerns.
“We're focused on making sure that the people on the bus are taken care of. We're going to maintain a route, which a lot of times the previous service veered off the route and the reliability just wasn't there for that service,” said Trainum.
The bus will run from 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
“You jump on the bus, get transported on our loop, it's going to be the same loop every single time, get off where you need to get off, get back on when you need to get home,” said Trainum.
Owners say the service will help the community as a whole.
“Help the guys that need the rides and then help the businesses with business,” said Chad Porter, owner of Nightlife Virginia and owner of The Hop RVA.
They're hoping with more sponsors, they'll be able to get three buses by the fall.
The owners say this weekend is going to be a trial run to see how the route works out. Once they get that established, riders will be able to track the bus in real-time on The Hop’s website so you know exactly where to wait and what stop to be at so you can get home safely.