Western-Washtenaw Area Value Express (WAVE) has been providing affordable transportation programs in Washtenaw County since 1976. However, for the first time in its history, programs temporarily closed in mid-March when WAVE’s Board of Directors voted on a closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Although ride programs were closed, behind-the-scenes activities and Board advice continued to prepare for the safe reopening of all programs scheduled for Monday, July 13, 2020.
Riders will notice several changes when entering buses and during the phone reservation process. Seating on buses will be limited to maintain social distancing standards. Fare boxes have been installed so hand-to-hand contact is minimal. Plexiglas cockpits were fabricated and built by Rite-Tech Enterprises, a local Chelsea business, which surround all driving stations. Drivers were provided gloves, face masks and face shields to use while providing various levels of assistance to passengers. Passengers will also be required to wear face coverings while traveling on WAVE vehicles.
No fares will be charged from July 13, 2020 through July 31, 2020. Normal fares will be required to ride as of August 1st. $20 ride discount passes are still available and can be purchased from drivers or arranged through the mail by calling WAVE’s dispatch team at (734) 475-9494. Passengers are asked to be prepared to pay fares with exact change to eliminate hand-to-hand contact with drivers.
WAVE would like to express our gratitude for local and state support and funding for Plexiglas cockpits to include: the Chelsea Community Foundation, the Chelsea Retirement Community, the Chelsea Area Senior Center, St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea Hospital and the Michigan Department of Transportation for grant opportunities. WAVE thanks also extend to residents and businesses that donated cloth face masks for staff and the Ugly Dog Distillery for hand sanitizer.