The ups and downs of the Detroit's mass transit efforts have not only enough drama to keep people interested but some inspiration for at least one new business.
The Detroit Bus Company
launched last week, providing a weekend bus loop in the greater downtown Detroit area. The Corktown/Ferndale-based business will have 12 stops in downtown, Midtown, New Center, Eastern Market, Corktown, Hubbard Farms and Woodbridge. The buses will run from the afternoon until just after the bars close on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
"It really came out of frustration for having all of the these public solutions pop up and fizzle," says Andy Didorosi, president & founder of Detroit Bus Company
. "This is a solution for the mean time until a public solution pans out."
Riders can purchase a $5 wristband that will provide them access to the bus for the entire day. The bus will arrive at each stop once every 35 minutes during operating hours. The Detroit Bus company is using bars, restaurants and stadiums as bus stops, including Slows
, Comerica Park and Woodbridge Pub
"Bars are an ideal bus stop," Didorosi says. "They are a natural space to congregate. I can't think of a better place for a bus stop."
, who owns Paper Street Motors
in Ferndale, started working on the company in January and now employs a team of four people. He plans to focus on dependability in the company's first few months before seriously exploring creating a second bus line up Woodward Avenue later this year.
"We want to do a Royal Oak to Hamtramck to downtown Detroit route," Didorosi says. "We tested that and it worked pretty well."
Source: Andy Didorosi, president & founder of Detroit Bus Company
Writer: Jon Zemke
Read more about Metro Detroit's growing entrepreneurial ecosystem at SEMichiganStartup.com.