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Lakefront bus service to Columbus transfers to Athens Community Center on Nov. 22

ATHENS, Ohio (Nov. 15, 2006) -- Beginning Wednesday, Nov. 22, the Lakefront Lines charter bus service from Athens to Columbus, Ohio, will be based at the Athens Community Center located at 701 E. State St. The bus will both pick up and drop off riders at the location, arriving at the Community Center at 1:10 p.m. and leaving for Columbus at 1:20 p.m. seven days a week. 

Tickets may be purchased at the Athens Community Center front desk, or by calling Lakefront Bus Lines at 1-800-331-5009. Tickets ordered by phone will be mailed and will need extra time to arrive. City officials encourage riders to purchase their tickets for the Columbus trip ahead of time to avoid delays. 

"We want to thank the Ohio University community for their patronage, and we look forward to efficient service and more convenience for bus travelers at the Athens Community Center," said Patti Pennell, director of retail operations for Ohio University Auxiliary Services.

With the change in venue, the City of Athens has assumed the administration of the Lakefront Lines charter bus operation that currently arrives and departs at the same times from The Oasis on the Ohio University campus. Nov. 21 is the official last day of operation for The Oasis, a restaurant/convenience store owned by the university.

A grant from the Ohio Department of Transportation funds the bus service. Ohio University will transfer the remaining funds to the city of Athens as part of the switch in service providers. 

One major advantage of the transition of the bus service to the Athens Community Center is an expansion of service. The Oasis sells tickets Monday through Friday; however, the community center will offer the bus service seven days a week. 

"I am proud of the fact that Ohio University has partnered with the city of Athens and Lakefront Lines to find a permanent home for the bus service to and from Columbus," said John Kotowski, associate vice president for facilities. "It is an added bonus that the new service will be an improvement over the current service because of the new seven-day schedule. I'm also excited that Ohio University is committed to making more improvements in transportation services between the Athens campus and bus and airline connections in the region." 

In response to the change in bus service, the Athens Transit bus schedule has been altered to accommodate people who need a ride to the community center to catch the Lakefront Lines bus to Columbus. 

Beginning Nov. 22, the Athens Transit East State Street bus schedule will be accelerated five minutes and leave from in front of the parking garage on East Washington Street in uptown Athens everyday at 1 p.m. The bus will arrive at the community center at approximately 1:14 p.m. In addition to the 1 p.m. pickup, the East State Street bus also makes earlier runs to the Athens Community Center. For more information about the Athens Transit schedule, call 740-592-2727.

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Media Contact: Media Specialist George Mauzy, (740) 597-1794 or mauzy@ohio.edu

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