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Merrimack College Improved Shuttle System

Merrimack College’s New Shuttle Benches and Shelter Design

By Erin Flynn

During the Fall 2022 semester, Merrimack College announced a change in the community which is a new and improved shuttle system.

In the previous academic years, The Warrior Shuttle has offered limited stops and services to students on campus, with the addition of unreliability and uncertainty of the shuttle system.

With many students needing the accommodations of the Warrior Shuttle, Merrimack College now offers flexibility to go to places on and off campus safer and easier.

Vice President for student enrollment, Darren Conine, explained the reason for needing an improved shuttle system: “As our student body and campus continue to grow, we must meet the increased demand for a reliable and safe transportation system, we are excited to debut the new enhanced Warrior Shuttle providing our community with access to important on and off campus locations.”

The Warrior Shuttle is assisting students Monday through Fridayto get to places on and off campus. The shuttle can bring students to Crowe Hall, McQuade Library, Rogers Center, Lot J, Center for Innovation and Research in Engineering and Computational Sciences, Hamel Health Center, and Andover Landing. On Saturday’s and Sunday’s the Warrior Shuttle offers transportation to shops and stores in the area like CVS, Market Basket, The Loop (Methuen, MA), and Tuscan Village (Salem, NH).

One distinct difference between the Warrior Shuttle from past years is the design of the shuttles. The Warrior Shuttles are now easily recognizable to students and faculty as the shuttles have the Merrimack College logo and colors covered all over them. Whereas in past years they had plain white shuttles which left students and faculty unsure whether or not the shuttle was one of Merrimack College’s transportation. This change improves the safety of the Warrior Shuttle.

Along with the new design of the Warrior Shuttle system, Merrimack College added bus stops with shelter and benches for those waiting to be transported. This also allows for a safer transportation system and a more comfortable place for students awaiting the shuttle.

Even though there are more accommodating options for the Warrior Shuttle than previous years past, some students are still unimpressed by Merrimack College’s shuttle service. After interviewing Merrimack College freshman, Gavin Boyle, who actively uses the Warrior Shuttle, there appears to be issues within the new shuttle system. When asked about the issues of the new Merrimack Shuttle system Boyle stated: “The Merrimack shuttle is horrible. It runs at inconvenient times, the drivers have the worst taste in music, they also are not the best at driving and do not know how to drive like they hit bumps pretty hard. My experience has not been the best while taking the Merrimack shuttle”.

The new Warrior Shuttle system has just launched, which may be the cause of some of these early-on hiccups that were mentioned. Within time hopefully experiences will be improved for those who take the Warrior Shuttle or with good experiences on the Warrior Shuttle hopefully they will remain the same.

Merrimack College is also providing new services to help students that are not from the area and live out-of-state. The Office of the Dean of Students at Merrimack College stated “Merrimack College has partnered with Bellmore’s Transportation to provide a student shuttle service between the Merrimack College campus and either Boston Logan International Airport or South Station. This service allows students access to transportation home during Merrimack College official breaks including holidays, spring break, and the start and end of each semester”. Offering this service helps students immensely as it is a free service whereas students would have to pay for an Uber or Lyft or any other form of transportation, which could be costly for full-time college students.

Overall with the new Warrior Shuttle system in place, it has been reflected to be a better system than previous academic years. With the implantation of new designs, new vans/buses, new stops, new accommodations, and new shelters the Warrior Shuttle has proved that the future of the shuttle system on the Merrimack College campus is en route to a better future.

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