AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - A new pilot bus route to Fort Gordon starts Monday.
Augusta commissioners will hold a ribbon cutting for the new route at 9 a.m. Monday in front of the food court at the Augusta Mall - one of the stops on the route.
Commissioners gave the green light earlier in October to move forward with the route, which starts at the Walmart on Wrightsboro Road and ends at the bus depot on Fort Gordon.
"I think it's going to be of good help," Commissioner Marion Williams said. "It's just a pilot right now - just to see how it's going to work."
The six-month pilot route includes four stops: the Walmart on Wrightsboro Road, the Augusta Mall, Eisenhower Medical Center and the Fort Gordon bus depot. Advocates of the bus route, like Denice Traina, are glad commissioners are giving the route a chance.
"It feels great," said Traina. "I just want to extend a huge thanks to the commissioners. Because I know each and every one of them have been listening to us."
Traina said this is a big win for people looking for jobs on Fort Gordon, and with Fort Gordon becoming the new headquarters for Cyber Command, more people and jobs will be coming to the area.
"This is a win for working class folks, and it's a big win for Fort Gordon. It's one thing to say, 'Thank you for your service.' This is one way to really say thank you to them. Families and all the folks that work out there," Traina said.
The pilot bus route comes with a big price tag, which raises concerns for some Richmond County residents.
"It's $150,000 initially that we're putting out there for the time period," Commissioner Williams said.
"People can be short-sighted. Their vision isn't in the long term," said Traina.
People who don't want the new routes say that the city has bigger issues to worry about, but officials hope that people will see the greater good in the long run.
"I just think it'll be a good trial period for us to at least try and see how it's going to work and I think once people see how it's going to work, and once people see how convenient the bus is, on Washington. I see the bus running more frequently now, I see the buses running on a little tighter schedule. I think people are going to get use to it," Williams said.
The bus route will run Monday through Saturday. Click here to see a map of the route and to see pick-up and drop-off times and locations.