CONWAY, SC (WMBF) - The Coast RTA needs your help. It put out signs for new bus stops, but they were removed over the weekend, and not by authorities.
A total of 14 signs were added between Conway and Loris. Now eight of them are missing at four stops: Main Street at Highway 65, Main Street at HTC, Main Street at Wise Road and Main Street at the DMV in Conway.
Coast RTA posted the signs last Thursday to get people ready for new routes starting Monday in the Loris, Bucksport and Finklea communities. By the weekend, they noticed they were gone when bus drivers were doing test runs.
Their first reaction was to call Horry County officials to see if they had removed the signs, but found out that wasn't the case. The signs were temporary but pricey. They're about $50 dollars a piece.
There are plans for more permanent signs, but since that takes a while this was a way to educate and inform people who aren't used to riding buses.
"We've been doing travel training workshops for the last couple of weeks, educating the public in those communities as well as wanting to have these stops ready and prepared in advance of launching service yesterday so they're like oh that's where the bus stop is, that's where I need to be to take the bus." Coast RTA Public Information Officer Michelle Cantey said.
If you have information about the missing signs, call the Horry County Police Department. If you have the signs return them at Coast RTA in Conway. It's located on Third Avenue.
New bus routes are now in place for the Loris, Bucksport and Finklea communities. In July, we first told you about a series of public meetings Coast RTA had planned to get your feedback. Now that feedback has turned into Coast RTA launching its new service.
The service started Monday and will provide three trips per day for those communities.
The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce recently awarded Coast RTA an 18 month grant to help fund service to the Loris and Bucksport communities to offer ways for people to get to work, school or job training.
Coast RTA will even do a survey to see if people are actually taking the bus for those specific reasons.
Up to 50 people showed up to the meetings expressing their gratitude or concerns. Some attended and didn't need transpiration but wanted to be informed so they could make others aware of the new service.
Others came thanking Coast RTA for recognizing the need in their communities.
But there were some people wanting changes to Coast RTA's draft plan.
Mostly about placing stops near areas where there were resources while people waited. Which is something Coast RTA was able to accomplish.
"We actually ended up moving our stop in the Finklea community from one location that we had proposed to keep it on a route to a little further down the road to the Finklea community center. There's assets of having restrooms there and shelter if it's pouring down raining," said Cantey.
If you're not sure where the new routes are, visit www.CoastRTARideTracker.com to download the Coast RTA app so you know exactly when a bus is coming near you.