There’s a new way to get around downtown Santa Monica this summer.

The Big Blue Bus’ Route 45 will travel between downtown’s most popular destinations from July 1 to Sept. 2. The bus will stop at the Santa Monica Pier and Beach, Ocean Avenue, the Third Street Promenade, Santa Monica Place and the Downtown Santa Monica Expo Line Station.

Route 45 will travel in a loop around Colorado and Ocean Avenues, Santa Monica Boulevard and Broadway. From the Expo Line station, customers can cross the street at Colorado Avenue and 4th Street to reach the first stop.

“We hope it takes people out of their cars and potentially relieves some congestion from the (scooters) that crowd our streets in the summer months,” said BBB director Ed King.

Riders will be able to catch the bus every 12 to 15 minutes between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m.

Fares will be the regular $1.10 with a TAP card or $1.25 with cash, but riders who transfer from the Expo Line or another bus route can ride for $0.50.

First-time riders can also claim a free fare through the Token Transit app.

King said BBB is launching the line to better serve customers and attract more riders. Staff heard consistent feedback from customers that they carry a lot of items on the Expo Line when they go to the beach in the summer and would find a shuttle helpful, he said.

“We think this is a good alternative for someone with a stroller or a cooler, or people with disabilities,” he said.

King said it’s also a way to beat the summer heat.

“People can take a nice, air-conditioned ride on the bus to get where they need to go, whether that’s the pier or the beach or to do some shopping on the Promenade or at Santa Monica Place,” he said.”

BB ambassadors will be distributing Route 45 swag and surveying customers about whether they would ride the route again or recommend it to others, King said. The agency will evaluate ridership numbers and customer feedback in the fall to decide whether to run Route 45 year-round.

madeleine@smdp.com

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2 Comments

  1. $1.10 per person, why would a group or say 4 use it if they could park and walk for that same amount? If the goal is to reduce the traffic than don’t charge.

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