The new line officially went into service Sunday
VANCOUVER — Local leaders, visitors and community members joined C-TRAN in observing the grand opening of The Vine on Mill Plain during a ribbon-cutting event Saturday. The new line officially went into service Sunday (Oct. 1).
FTA Administrator Nuria Fernandez, C-TRAN Chief Executive Officer Shawn M. Donaghy, Vancouver Mayor and C-TRAN Board member Anne McEnerny-Ogle, Clark College President Dr. Karin Edwards and others marked the occasion at the new Mill Plain Transit Center, on the east end of the project corridor.
The Vine on Mill Plain will serve 37 new stations along a 10-mile corridor between downtown Vancouver and the new transit center, located near Mill Plain at 184th Avenue. The Vine on Mill Plain replaces C-TRAN’s Route 37, which previously served the Mill Plain corridor.
“The Federal Transit Administration is proud to support The Vine on Mill Plain, which will create exciting opportunities by connecting people in Clark County with jobs and higher education, while reducing pollution and congestion along the way,” said FTA Administrator Nuria Fernandez, whose agency provided more than $30 million in federal funds to support the line. “Thanks to the Biden-Harris Administration’s investments in America, more and more communities are enjoying the benefits of high-quality public transportation.”
“It’s such an exciting time to see this important milestone become a reality. We’re thrilled for the new opportunities The Vine will bring to Mill Plain and the larger community,” said Shawn M. Donaghy, C-TRAN’s chief executive officer. “This new line builds on the success of the original Vine route, and we’re not done yet.”
The Vine on Mill Plain represents an expansion of The Vine system. The first segment, serving Vancouver’s Fourth Plain corridor, began operating in 2017. Future Vine corridors are already in planning for Highway 99 and East Fourth Plain/162nd Avenue. By creating an interconnected network of bus rapid transit service in Clark County, C-TRAN aims to improve access to transportation for the entire community. Bus rapid transit, or BRT, uses a combination of features — including larger vehicles, enhanced station design, technology and improved passenger amenities — to create a faster, more efficient and reliable service. BRT benefits not only the corridors it serves, but the other local bus routes that connect to it.
When The Vine first opened on Fourth Plain in 2017, it became the region’s first BRT system. According to C-TRAN, by the end of 2017 ridership on The Vine was 45 percent higher than the service it replaced. Additional ridership increases followed in 2018 (19 percent) and 2019 (10 percent). In 2019 alone, The Vine carried more than 1.4 million trips. Ridership is now growing again post-pandemic. But the benefits of quality transit service are more than just rides. Since The Vine opened, there have been more than 2,000 housing units added within a half-mile of Fourth Plain, and roughly $250 million in development value.
To differentiate the two Vine segments operating on Fourth Plain and Mill Plain, C-TRAN will also use color designations. The Vine on Fourth Plain is known as the Green Line, and Mill Plain will be served by the Red Line. A series of other local route changes will also improve connections at the new Mill Plain Transit Center starting October 1.
Opening The Vine on Mill Plain culminates a five-year process that began with broad outreach along the corridor and community in 2018. Construction officially kicked off with a groundbreaking ceremony at the Mill Plain Transit Center site in September 2021. The Vine on Mill Plain now opens ahead of schedule and under budget.
For more information about current and future corridors on The Vine, visit www.catchthevine.com.
C-TRAN is the regional public transportation provider for Clark County. It offers Local bus service within its Clark County service area, plus Regional and Express bus service to Portland. C-TRAN also provides on-demand service with The Current, operating in Camas/Washougal, Ridgefield/La Center, WSU Vancouver/Salmon Creek, Rose Village, and the Port of Vancouver. For more information on C-TRAN please visit C-TRAN’s website at www.c-tran.com, or call Customer Service at 360-695-0123.
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