Hampton Roads Transit

Page updated on 10/29/14.

Main Stops in this Portal

On this page, you will find information on the following:

  • An overview of the HRT system
  • Transit Network Structure
  • Transit Centers and other major bus transfer points
  • Practical information such as current fares

Overview

Hampton Roads Transit (HRT) is the public transit district covering most of the Chesapeake Bay region of Hampton Roads, VA. Their service area includes the municipalities of Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Hampton, Newport News, Chesapeake, and Portsmouth. HRT is governed by the Transportation District Commission of Hampton Roads (TDCHR), which was created through Virginia state statutes. HRT was formed in October of 1999 via a voluntary merger between the area’s two former transit providers; the Peninsula Transportation District Commission (or PENTRAN) and Tidewater Regional Transit.

In 2011, the city of Suffolk decided to withdraw from the TDCHR. As a result, HRT no longer contracts with that city to provide public transit services. Suffolk’s transit services are now provided by the multi-county Virginia Regional Transit district.

Transit Network Structure

Like many transit districts; The HRT bus system operates on a hub-spoke system by which routes travel out of centralized transfer points. However, the network of bus routes is shaped more like a spider web, with more routes concentrated towards the city centers and major employment centers and less routes serving suburban areas. Each municipality contracts with HRT separately and thus determines how much bus service is provided to them based on how much local funding is available. Like HART and PSTA in Tampa, HRT currently has no dedicated revenue stream and must rely on local, state, and federal funding, as well as farebox revenues.

Transfer Centers

HRT has numerous transfer points throughout its service region. However, no modernized transit center facility currently exists within the downtown Norfolk area. This will change however after 2015, when a proposed transfer facility is to be constructed along Wood St in downtown Norfolk. As of July 7, 2013, an interim transfer facility is in operation along Wood St and comprises of three boarding zones. Please see my blog post from June 22, 2013 for further information on what bus routes serve the interim terminal and how you can locate your respective bus route.

The current Cedar Grove Transfer Center near downtown Norfolk.
The former Cedar Grove Transfer Center near downtown Norfolk. This transfer center permanently closed on July 7, 2013. Photo taken by HARTride 2012. April, 2013.

Transit Services

HRT operates roughly 51 bus routes throughout Hampton Roads. These include numerous local bus routes serving Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Portsmouth, Chesapeake, Hampton, and Newport News, as well as routes serving Naval Station Norfolk. There is also a small network of express routes, known as the Metro Area Express (or MAX), which provide seamless connections between Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Portsmouth, Newport News, and Naval Station Norfolk. MAX buses are usually distinguished from local buses by exterior livery and plush interiors with reclining seats.

Other HRT services include the following:

  • The Peninsula Commuter Service: A small network of express routes that serve major employment centers throughout Hampton and Newport News.
  • The Norfolk NET (Route 17): Downtown Norfolk’s circulatory bus route, running seven days a week. NET stands for Norfolk Electric Transit, because this route uses 30-foot Gillig BRT-style Hybrid-drive buses.
  • The Virginia Beach WAVEA seasonal (summer) shuttle service that operates along the Virginia Beach Oceanfront to allow residents and visitors quick access to popular destinations along the Oceanfront. This service operates similarly to the Suncoast Beach Trolley in Pinellas County, Florida.
  • Door-to-Door Paratransit Services via Hampton Roads Transit Paratransit.
  • The Tide Light Rail Line: A 7.4 mile LRT line that operates between downtown Norfolk to the boundaries of Norfolk/Virginia Beach at Newtown Rd.
  • The Elizabeth River Ferry: Three paddle wheel ferry boats provide river service between Portsmouth and Norfolk so that commuters can escape the morning and evening rush hour backups along area interstates, bridges, and tunnels.

Maps of the HRT bus system (from HRT):

  • Click here to view the HRT Southside System Map (effective October, 2012, includes the Tide LRT line and stops).
  • Click here to view the HRT Peninsula System Map (effective October, 2012)

Span of operating service

Service schedules vary throughout the HRT system. While some routes operate 7 days a week, many do not have Sunday service, some suburban routes do not have weekend service at all. Please visit gohrt.com to see which days of the week your particular route operates and to see route frequency. I hope to have a route matrix posted here in the  distant future.

OWL (Late-Night) Service

Some HRT bus routes operate through 12-midnight, but these are often limited to routes that have higher ridership numbers during the evening. Many suburban routes have weekday service ending prior to 9pm, with weekend services ending before 7 or 8pm. In the coming months, I hope to have a matrix of routes that operate OWL service posted here in the distant future.

Holiday Service Schedule

Click here to view service levels for upcoming holidays (from HRT). I usually try to blog about upcoming holiday service schedules approximately 2 weeks prior to the upcoming holiday. Please keep in mind that routes that normally do not operate on weekends will not operate on holidays either, regardless of the day of the week that the holiday falls upon.

HRT bus and LRT booklets and a 1-day GoPass card.
HRT bus and LRT booklets and a 1-day GoPass card.

Current Fares – NEW FARE STRUCTURE IN EFFECT!

Below is the current fare structure for all HRT services:

*ID is required to qualify for reduced fares. Click here for current policies.

All Modes (Except Virginia Beach WAVE Shuttle):

  • One-Way Cash Fare
    • Regular Fare (Local Bus, Light Rail, Ferry): $1.75
    • MAX (Express Bus): $3.50
    • Reduced (Youth/Seniors/Disabled): $0.75*
    • Reduced MAX: $1.75*
    • Children under 38″ tall may ride free with a paying adult
  • GoPasses
    • 1-day GO Pass: $4.00 (MAX: $6.50)
      • Reduced: $2.00* (Excludes MAX)
    • 1-day GO Pass (5-pack): $19.00 (MAX: $30.00)
      • Reduced: $9.50* (Excludes MAX)
    • 7-day GO Pass: $20.00 (Excludes MAX)
    • 30-day GO Pass: $60.00 (MAX: $110.00)
      • Reduced: $35.00*
  • Click here for current fare policies.

Virginia Beach WAVE Shuttles (Seasonal Service):

  • One-Way Cash Fare
    • VB WAVE Fare: $1.00 ~ Adults and Youth
    • Reduced (Seniors/Disabled): $0.50*
  • GoPasses
    • Shuttle 1-Day GoPass: $2.00
      • Reduced: $1.00*
    • 5-pack of Shuttle 1-Day GoPasses: $10.00
    • Shuttle 3-Day GoPass: $5.00
      • Reduced: $2.50*
  • Click here for current fare policies.

Take your bike with you!

All HRT buses are equipped with bike racks, and bikes are permitted onboard all LRT trains. No permit is required, but if you’re a first-time user, you can get further information by calling HRT customer service at (757) 222-6100.

Transportation Alternatives

HRT’s TRAFFIX Program provides alternative transportation solutions to help ease congestion along area roadways. These services include carpooling/vanpooling services, Park and Sail, and telecommuting options. For further information about TRAFFIX, or to sign up, click here.

Disclaimer

Please keep in mind that information on this page is subject to change, especially things like schedules and fares. I do try my best to keep things as accurate as possible, but sometimes things change without notice. To obtain the latest information, please visit gohrt.com or call (757)-222-6100.

Please be patient as I continue to work on this portal. I will have much more to come soon!

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