Route 6 extension planned for NE St. Cloud
Beginning Sunday, May 8, Routes 6 and 7* will be officially extended to include Lincoln Ave. NE and part of Franklin Ave. NE including the Metro Bus Operations Center. The loop will be served on the outbound leg of each route. This expansion will include additional service to one bus stop on Benton Dr. that is currently served by Route 22.
This is the first service expansion for Metro Bus since 2016 and first significant change to service since the Sartell ConneX trial began in 2019. With this service change, Metro Bus is able to add service for commuters and customers in the industrial area as well as an additional public transportation corridor to Sauk Rapids without increasing service hours. This was a critical consideration given the staffing shortages Metro Bus faces. The added part of the route will not change the total time it takes for the bus to travel the full route.
There will be four bus stops added for this extension, two on Lincoln Ave. and two on Franklin Ave. Three of the new stops have shelters – at Dubow Textile and near Gopher Bargain Center on Lincoln Ave. and at the stop near Crescent St. on Franklin Ave. The routes will also stop at the Metro Bus Operations Center. The rest of Routes 6 and 7 will not be affected and the routes will remain 45-minute loops. One bus stop on East St. Germain St. will be removed to allow buses to make a left turn onto Lincoln Ave.
The infrastructure for the stops and shelters was funded in part by a Community Development Block Grant and was installed in partnership with the City of St. Cloud.
On-bus customer communication signs and social media posts will be published in April reminding passengers of the upcoming change.
*Route 7 is not running until further notice. When Route 7 resumes, its extension will follow the same course as the Route 6 extension.