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New bus route connecting Natick, Wellesley to MBTA Green Line starts Monday

Posted by Jaclyn Reiss  October 18, 2013 01:30 PM

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MetroWest Regional Transit Authority

The new Route 8 bus starting Monday will travel from Natick's community-senior center through Wellesley, ending at the MBTA Green Line's Woodland Station in Newton.

A new bus route shuttling locals from Natick's community-senior center on East Central Street through Wellesley to the Green Line's Woodland Station in Newton will begin on Monday, Oct. 21, according to transportation officials.

The new bus schedule, dubbed Route 8, is operated by the MetroWest Regional Transit Authority and will run about once per hour Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. through 7:30 p.m.

An MWRTA-generated map shows the route will start in Natick and travel Rte. 9 to Rte. 135 to Rte. 16, ending at the MBTA Green Line. The bus route will make several stops throughout town, including at Wellesley College, Fells Market, Linden Street, Wellesley Square, Wellesley Hills, and the Newton-Wellesley Hospital, to name a few.

The bus route will take approximately 30 minutes from its start in Natick to the Newton train stop, according to the MWRTA schedule.

For adults, taking the shuttle will cost $1.50, or $1.10 with a Charlie Card. Students can pay $1 with a valid ID; children under 6 years old can ride for free. Seniors can ride for 75 cents with a valid photo ID that includes the rider's date of birth.

The bus is being introduced by way of a competitive $400,000 federal reverse-commute grant administered through the state's transportation department, said Ed Carr, MWRTA administrator.

"When we put the Rte. 1 [shuttle from Natick to the Green Line] together, we were aiming to bring the Metrowest to the Woodland stop on the Green Line -- but we found that most riders are coming from the Green Line to the Metrowest," Carr previously told the Globe. "Given the density in Wellesley and the need for jobs access, I think a lot of the same thing will happen with this new route."

At the forums last month, residents asked officials to consider instating night and weekend service. But Meghan Jop, then Wellesley's planning director, noted the scheduling might prove difficult with limited money for the project.

"There are limitations in funding," Jop previously said. "It puts constraints on our operating hours."

For more information on the bus route and operating schedule, visit the MWRTA's official website.

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Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at jaclyn.reiss@globe.com

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