A group of local residents gathered with a non-profit group on February 17 to take action to restore a very popular bus transportation route at the Music City Bus Terminal at the intersection of 5th Avenue and Charlotte Avenue.
The protest, organized by the non-profit group Music City Riders United, protested the removal of bus route number 10 at the Nashville Electric Service and called on the Metropolitan Transit Authority to reinstate the bus stop that residents, the elderly and the disabled, depend on for their transportation needs and to pay their monthly electric bills.
According to a press release, the MTA claimed it removed the bus route in 2016 to save money, but protesters such as Angelique Johnson said the NES bus route removal is becoming more of a burden on the elderly and disabled.
“It’s dangerous and impossible for someone who is disabled or elderly to get there (to NES) to pay their bills. We feel it’s not right to take the stop away,” said Johnson.
Johnson said that the MCRU has attended every meeting of the MTA and filed every complaint with the MTA to get the NES stop restored, but there was no response from the MTA or MTA CEO Stephen Bland. She said the NES bus route was important for her personally and claimed to understand how hard it is to get from one place to another.
Another protester, Antoinika Murphy, said that she attended the protest to show support for the riders in helping get the NES bus route restored.
She said that when she heard about the elimination of the bus route, she was surprised and upset.
“Many people from Nashville rely on the NES stop to pay their bills because many people don’t have cars or reliable transportation. They have to depend on the MTA to get to the NES stop,” said Murphy.
Murphy said that even though the MCRU had collected over 500 signatures, the MTA had not responded to their concerns about requests to restore the bus route.
But the MCRU will continue to conduct soapbox protests until the NES bus route is restored. Murphy is requesting CEO Bland to change the decision to restore the bus route because the residents of Nashville depend on the route for their transportation needs.