Medical Campus explores shuttle to connect commuters to Metro Rail

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Medical Campus explores shuttle to connect commuters to Metro Rail

By The Buffalo News

Catching that train to the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus may soon have a silver lining, depending on where you live.

Those who commute to the Medical Campus and are looking to hop the Metro Rail, but live a good distance from it, may get some help to get to the train and back home so they don’t have to drive and search for parking.

The non-profit organization that coordinates transportation and other neighborhood initiatives on the Medical Campus is looking for ways to help smooth the way for would-be train commuters who don’t live close to the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority’s Metro line.

“We’re trying to see if we can implement a shuttle service, bike share or van pool,” said Thea Hassan, BNMC’s newly hired transportation program manager. “It’s being considered.”

It all ties into the organization’s goal to encourage people working and studying on campus – and living near it – to choose healthier options and to help minimize parking crunches on the campus and neighborhood streets.

[Related: Medical Campus hires transportation program manager]

“Our goal is a new way of thinking. Instead of expanding the supply, we’re trying to reduce the demand,” Hassan said of BNMC’s transportation initiatives. “We’re trying to tackle from bottom up, top down, and all of our sides.”

Hassan has dubbed the shuttle idea “First mile, last mile.” The big focus is to help people who live a mile or so away from the Metro line. “How do we get them there and back home?” she said.

No decision has been made, but the organization is working on helping to make it easier for commuters to use the Metro Rail to get to the newly renovated Allen Street Medical Station, which is located inside the University at Buffalo’s new medical school building under construction at Allen and Main streets.