Ride On announced that in October it will launch a new, limited stop, higher speed bus service on Maryland Route 355 called Ride On extRa, It will provide a faster option for bus riders during rush hours, making only 12 stops between the Medical Center Metrorail Station in Bethesda and the Lakeforest Transit Center in Gaithersburg. Ride On extRa will provide faster service with “less stop, more go.”
Buses will run every 10 minutes from 5:30 to 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 to 7:30 p.m. At Ride On extRa bus stops, passengers will be able to take advantage of connections to Metrorail, 15 Metrobus routes, MARC Brunswick Line, MTA Commuter buses, and 42 Ride On routes.
“Maryland Route 355 is one of the most heavily used corridors in Montgomery County, so while we continue to plan for Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) on this roadway, the new Ride On extRa service will move people more quickly in modern, sleek vehicles with enhanced amenities,” said Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett. “Giving travelers more options can reduce the number of cars on this highly congested thoroughfare and ease the commute for the remaining drivers.”
For Ride On extRa, MCDOT will use 17 new, specially branded buses with easy access boarding, WiFi, and USB charging ports. Ride On extRa’s bus shelters will feature real time information displays. The new service will accept standard SmarTrip cards and passes as well as cash. To eliminate delays that occur when passengers add cash to SmarTrip cards on board the bus, passengers will not be able to load cash on to SmarTrip cards on the bus.
The system has only 12 stops versus the current 80 stops along Route 355. Stops include: Lakeforest Transit Center, Summit Ave., Westland Dr., Shady Grove Metro, Montgomery College, Rockville Metro, Edmonston Dr., Halpine Rd., Marinelli Rd., Security Ln., Tuckerman Ln., and Medical Center Metro.