This blog post originally appeared on Patrick McDonough’s CityBeautiful21 blog. McDonough is GoTriangle’s Manager of Planning and Transit Oriented Development.
Monday, August 8th was an exciting day – for the first time ever, we now have direct regional bus service to and from Downtown Carrboro! GoTriangle Route 405, which currently runs between Chapel Hill and Durham, will be extended into Carrboro and will provide service during rush hour between Carrboro and Durham. A big crowd was on hand Monday morning to greet the new buses. Here are the key things to know about the new Route 405:
- There will be seven departures from Carrboro to Durham every morning, with the earliest at 5:45 AM and the latest one at 8:41 AM. There will be seven return trips in the evening with departures from Durham to Carrboro between 3:30 pm and 6:30 pm.
- GoTriangle buses will make two stops in Carrboro: one at Collins Crossing/Abbey Ct, and the other at the Weaver St Realty/Jade Palace pair of bus stops downtown.
- Route 405 will provide a direct, one-seat ride to the Duke West campus and Duke Hospital area along Erwin Rd, the American Tobacco Campus, and to downtown Durham.
- The regular cash fare for the bus is $2.25 for a one-way trip. Discounted multi-ride tickets are available, and employees at Duke, American Tobacco (read far down page), and other major employers are eligible for a prepaid GoPass from their employer.
Things Carrboro Residents Can Do With Route 405, Part I – Catch the Early Amtrak Train to Charlotte
Prior to Route 405’s extension, the only way to get to Durham by transit in the morning from Carrboro was riding Chapel Hill Transit and then catching Route 405 into Durham. However, the morning train to Charlotte (Piedmont #73) leaves Durham at 7:19 am, and the F, J, and CW routes all don’t start early enough to connect with the 405 in Chapel Hill to make the connection. With 405 beginning in Carrboro, there are now TWO departures from the Jones Ferry/Collins Crossing stop at 5:45 and 6:15 am which both will get you to Durham Station in time to catch the early train. The same two trips also pick up in Downtown Carrboro at Weaver St Realty at 5:48 and 6:18 am, respectively.
Things Carrboro Residents Can Do With Route 405, Part II – Grab Breakfast in Downtown Carrboro and Ride To Duke/Durham With Ease
A trip I have tried to make many times in the past but was too challenging goes like this: I would be headed to Downtown Durham for work, and thus need to transfer from a Chapel Hill Transit bus from my neighborhood in Carrboro to GoTriangle. Since this switch needed to occur in downtown Chapel Hill, if I wanted to grab breakfast at Weaver St, Neal’s, or anywhere else downtown- I would need to catch three buses to make it work:
- Bus 1: Neighborhood to Downtown Carrboro
- Bus 2: CHT bus from Downtown Carrboro to Downtown Chapel Hill
- Bus 3: GoTriangle bus to Durham
The CHT buses that you can take to make the second trip (CW, J, and F) sometimes have big enough gaps between them between 7 and 8 am that with the old schedules/routes, you’d be rolling the dice that you’ll miss your connection and be late to work in Durham. Route 405 stopping in Carrboro solves this dilemma neatly by eliminating that middle bus trip.
Imagine you live up North Greensboro St near the intersection with Hillsborough Rd, and work at the American Tobacco Campus. The F route leaves N Greensboro at Morningside Drive at 7:38 am and reaches the Century Center stop (across the street from WSM) at 7:42 am. You can take the F bus, and have 30 minutes to get coffee or breakfast on the WSM lawn and then stroll over to the Weaver St Realty stop at 8:10 or so. At 8:14, GoTriangle 405 comes by and reaches Durham Station at 8:55 am, and you walk right into American Tobacco by 9:00 am.
Prefer breakfast in downtown Chapel Hill? Don’t worry, that still works too. Just keep riding any CHT route to Franklin St, get food there, and board 405 at the Carolina Coffee Shop Stop.