Last night was a Mayoral Candidates Forum in the City Council Chambers. (More on that in a later post.) When asked about bus service for Virginia Beach, John Moss replied to expand it "not using the HRT model" but by having private operators go into the neighborhoods under franchise agreements. He stated such is used in the Washington, DC area.
Yes and no, John. Yes, private operators do supplement service up there. However, Metro operates the trunk routes and rail service. You can run all the buses into neighborhoods you want, but where are they to go once you get them to the main road?
I do see a place for private operators in Virginia Beach's mass transit future. If light rail is built, private operators could run service from the train stations into the neighborhoods. The 1999 proposal had vans operating door-to-station service, a proposition that most everyone thought was nutty. Common sense kicked in and vans aren't in Norfolk's Starter Line plan. We could have private companies do what the vans were planned to do then.