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Port Authority of Allegheny County allowing more people on buses, light rail

PITTSBURGH — The Port Authority of Allegheny County is lifting capacity limits on all of it’s vehicles at the end of June.

First, the Authority will increase vehicle capacity limits on Monday, May 31.

  • Capacity limits on 35-foot buses will increase to 15 riders from 10.
  • Capacity limits on 40-foot buses will increase to 25 riders from 15.
  • Capacity limits on 60-foot articulated buses and light rail cars will increase to 35 from 25.

A few weeks later, on Sunday, June 20, capacity limits on all Port Authority vehicles, including the Monongahela Incline, will be eliminated entirely. The Mon Incline is currently limited to 12 passengers per trip.

In according with guidance issued last week by the Centers for Disease Control, Port Authority drivers and passengers will continue to be required to wear face coverings while aboard vehicles until further notice, according to a news release.

Port Authority spokesperson Adam Brandolph said the decision was made because more people are getting vaccinate and are returning to work in office buildings and need transportation.

“Downtown is busier than it has been in the last 15 or so months so we really want to make sure we are prepared for when people come back that they can take public transit to where they need to go,” he said.

Welcome news for some, but concerning for others.

“I don’t like having more riders on the bus,” rider Jacquelyn Simmons said. “People are still getting sick daily. They just had 170 cases overnight. If it starts to get crowded I will get off. I don’t want anyone sitting next to me or nothing.”

The Port Authority says bus operators are comfortable with the change as long as passengers continue to wear masks.