Hampton Roads Light Rail Opening with Free Rides

Norfolk, Va. – Virginia’s first light rail system will open to the public on August 19, 2011 at 6 a.m. and begin carrying paying customers on Aug. 22, 2011.

The start of The Tide light rail service in Norfolk marks a regional milestone that will be celebrated with a series of public events along the 7.4-mile route.

To help kick off opening events, HRT will offer three days of free introductory service starting Friday, Aug. 19 through the 20th and 21st. Fare collection then begins on Monday, Aug. 22.

“I’m proud of the hard working women and men at HRT and our contractors for their dedication,” said Shucet. “The start of light rail service in Norfolk is a game changer. It marks the return of regular train service to downtown Norfolk and offers commuters the first new transportation choice in a generation. Now, it’s on to August 19.”

As part of The Tide’s pre revenue operations, light rail vehicles will operate on a regular schedule along the route but not carry customers. Residents can expect to see trains operating at any time between the Eastern Virginia Medical Center/Ft. Norfolk and Newtown Road stations.

The Tide rail system connects major employment, educational, entertainment and shopping centers along Interstate 264 in Norfolk – one of the region’s most congested traffic corridors.

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