LexTran, Lexington's bus system, is adding a new route and discontinuing two others.
Starting Monday, the new Route 31 Alexandria Crosstown will begin. It goes from Nicholasville Road between Rosemont Garden and Virginia Avenue out to the Cardinal Valley neighborhood, covering parts of Harrodsburg and Versailles roads along with Lane Allen Road and Rosemont Garden.
For those who live in the Versailles Road or Lane Allen areas, the route will provide a link to hospitals and the University of Kentucky "without requiring you to go downtown and get on another bus," LexTran spokeswoman Jill Barnett said.
Stops will include Central Baptist Hospital, the Kentucky Clinic, St. Joseph Hospital and Cardinal Hill Rehabilitation Hospital.
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In addition, "There's no other route that offers as many connections to other LexTran routes as this one," Barnett added.
The new route will operate during peak traffic times Monday through Friday, with four morning and four afternoon trips, Barnett said.
Meanwhile, Friday will be the last day for LexTran Route 26 Alumni/Lakeshore, which covers Chinoe and Fontaine roads and Lakeshore Drive, as well as Alumni and University drives and Upper Street, with seven peak-time trips Monday through Friday.
"The passengers aren't there any more," Barnett said. She said one reason is that at least one large apartment complex near Lakeshore Drive and Seton Road has been targeted for redevelopment. From March until now, about 4,170 riders have used the route, an average of 21 per day, she said.
The Chevy Chase area will continue to be served by two other routes — Route 1 Wood hill and Route 3 Tates Creek, she said.
On Saturday, Route 28 KY Horse Park will be discontinued, Barnett said. The route, from Main Street to Newtown Pike to Stanton Way to the Kentucky Horse Park, has operated with three trips on Saturdays since August 2010.
"It's very, very low usage," she said. Only 158 riders have utilized the route since March, according to LexTran.
"It's not enough to really justify the cost of keeping it out there," Barnett said.