January 8, 2020

 

DASH BUSES IN THE WEST END GET NEW LOOK TO CELEBRATE COMMUTER CHOICE SERVICE ENHANCEMENTS ON THE NEW AT1 PLUS

 

Alexandria, VA – DASH riders in Alexandria’s West End will see specially branded AT-1 Plus buses on the route this week. The new look is part of a series of improvements to the existing DASH AT1 route, which runs between Van Dorn Metro and Seminary Plaza via Landmark Mall, Lincolnia, Mark Center and Southern Towers. 

The new AT1 Plus includes improved service frequency, longer hours of operation, specially branded buses and additional real-time bus arrival displays. The improvements are the next step in the City of Alexandria’s long-term plan to introduce bus rapid transit (BRT) service from the West End to the Pentagon along the West End Transitway.

The new AT1 Plus service, which was introduced in October 2019, includes 10-minute peak headways and extended hours during evenings and weekends along the existing AT-1 route, one of DASH’s most popular routes.

Funding for the additional service and new passenger amenities is provided through the Commuter Choice program on the I-395/95 corridor, which is administered by the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission (NVTC) in partnership with the Commonwealth of Virginia. Through this partnership, a portion of the toll revenues from the 395 Express Lanes are reinvested locally by funding transit service and other multimodal projects along two expressway corridors, I-66 and I-395/95. DASH was awarded two Commuter Choice grants that will cover over $5 million in capital and operating expenses for FY 2020-2021. Aside from the AT-1 Plus improvements noted above, DASH was also able to secure program funding for major service improvements on the AT-9 in northern Alexandria, including 20-minute peak headways and new Sunday service. 

AT1 PLUS Facts

  • AT1 PLUS improvements were implemented in October 2019 to coincide with the opening of the I-395 Express Lanes. 
  • Improvements include 10-minute peak headways (previously 15), 20 minute off-peak headways (previously 30) and 30 minute evening/weekend headways (previously 30 on Saturdays and 60 on Sundays).
  • Key locations served by AT1 Plus include Van Dorn Metro, Landmark Mall, Landmark Plaza, Mark Center, Southern Towers Apartments and Seminary Plaza.
  • Special AT1 PLUS bus wraps celebrate the diversity of the West End.
  • Additional solar-powered, real-time info displays that show when the next bus is arriving will be installed at key AT1 PLUS bus stops in the coming weeks.
  • Improvements are 100% funded by I-395 Commuter Choice, which is a partnership between NVTC, PRTC, VDOT and DRPT.
  • Total FY20-21 funding awarded to DASH through the I-395 Commuter Choice program is $5 million, approximately $3 million for the AT1 PLUS and approximately $2 million for the AT9 over the next 20 months.
  • Total monthly ridership on AT1 PLUS increased by 26% in November and December 2019 when compared to the same months in the previous year (+21% weekday avg, +13% Saturday avg, +116% Sundays avg).