This morning there was a Tide launch preview meeting held at the Courtyard by Marriott on Greenwich Road in Virginia Beach. The meeting was conducted jointly by the City of Norfolk and Hampton Roads Transit (HRT).
The primary purpose was to brief businesses along the eastern portion of the alignment about upcoming Tide service. (That's why it was held in the periphery of the Newtown Road Station.) However, there was a large contingent of advocates for the disabled present, and a few people from Light Rail Now (LRN).
While most of the material was old news for those of us who have been following The Tide, a couple points of note were covered:
1. Opponents have tried to attack the fare verification system. Not only will their be checkers onboard, but off-duty Norfolk Police Department (NPD) officers to provide security. Failure to pay can result in a fine of up to $250, while using a counterfeit or fraudulent farecard carries a minimum $500 fine.
2. There will be a number of events on opening weekend in the periphery of the stations. Not only the official events, but many businesses and groups plan to capitalize on the opportunity provided by the expected crowds. For example, the YMCA adjacent to the York Street Station will hold an open house all weekend.