The university has updated its transportation services for students, according to an email sent by Lois Stanley, Vice President for Campus Planning and Operations and Matt Rushton, Chief of Public Safety. There have been changes made to the shuttle schedules and routes as it returns to pre-pandemic operation, according to the email.
The university has experienced difficulties with the BranVan service, a student driver shuttle service offered by the university, due to a shortage of student drivers, wrote Stanley and Rushton. In addition to this, the shuttle service is also adjusting to operating at pre-pandemic capacity which is at a higher demand than what was expected last year. The pre-pandemic campus BranVan schedule ran from noon to 2:30 a.m. and the Waltham BranVan ran from 4 p.m. to 2:45 a.m. The resumption of this schedule and lack of student drivers has resulted in an inconsistency in the shuttle service, according to the email.
Students interested in driving the BranVan can apply on Workday Student. They are looking for students with flexible schedules. Students would receive competitive pay, according to the email.
To temporarily resolve this situation, the university has recruited chartered buses which are covering the Waltham and campus routes seven days a week from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. until BranVan drivers are hired and trained to resume a fully student-run service, according to the email.
Updates regarding campus transportation can be found on the Department of Public Safety’s campus transportation page. The page includes the most recent information regarding transportation, scheduling and maps of shuttle routes, according to the page.
The university began running the Boston/Cambridge shuttle after having disbanded that service last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the email, Stanley and Rushton reminded students of the updated schedule on which the Boston/Cambridge shuttle is running. The updated schedule can be found on the Department of Public Safety’s Boston/Cambridge shuttle page.
Students should be aware the new schedule will be posted around campus soon, wrote Stanley and Rushton in the email, and should disregard the times currently up at BranVan stops on campus. The new schedule will also be available on Branda starting this weekend, according to the email.
Joseph’s Transportation Service is still being used on campus; buses running into Waltham from the university are supplied by Joseph’s. The buses run from 7 a.m. to midnight on weekdays, according to the email. Students should note the two separate schedules and routes for the Joseph’s Waltham Shuttle, wrote Stanley and Rushton. There is one schedule which runs before 4 p.m. and another which runs after 4 p.m. There are slight differences in the routes and the shuttles do not make the same stops as the Waltham BranVan service offered by the university which is driven by students.
In addition to the Shuttle webpages made available by the university, there is also a new BranVan Instagram account, according to the email. The social media account gives community members real-time updates regarding the service and informative posts regarding the various shuttle services offered by the university. According to Stanley and Rushton, they are looking for content creators to create informational posts for the account and increase information availability to students; students can apply on Workday Student for the position.
Live tracking of campus shuttles is an available feature on the Branda app, according to the email. The app has been updated to now distinguish between BranVan shuttles and Joseph’s shuttles.