The Town of Taos New Express Shuttle to Santa Fe

NEWS RELEASE
May 19, 2009

For Immediate Release
MEDIA CONTACTS
Joan Griffin
(505) 261-4444                        jgriffin@griffinassoc.com

Cathy Connelly
(575) 751-2001                                              cconnelly@taosgov.com

Taos Rolls Out New Express Shuttle Service
Between Santa Fe & Taos

Taos, NM – May 18, 2009 - The Town of Taos announced a new express nonstop shuttle service to link New Mexico Rail Runner travelers between Taos and Santa Fe. The new service – The Taos Express – will run weekends this summer beginning June 4th.

“The Rail Runner has been such a huge success, and we are looking for ways to expand that service into Taos,” explained Taos Mayor Darren Cordova. “Having the train continue into Taos is likely years away. Instead of waiting, we created the Taos Express to bring people to and from Taos easily and affordably.  Our intent is to continue and expand its service after this initial pilot program run.”

The Taos Express schedules are designed to coordinate with the New Mexico Rail Runner, north and southbound trains, www.nmrailrunner.com.  The shuttles, which are ADA compliant, will have bike racks and room for luggage for people who want to stay for the weekend in Taos.  Special Taos Express weekend packages can be found at www.taosvacationguide.com.

“Over the last two years, New Mexicans have turned to public transit in greater numbers than ever,” said Transportation Secretary Gary L. J. Girón. “With the addition of the Rail Runner, we have made it easier for people to connect throughout Central New Mexico and now north to Taos. This new shuttle connection is just another component of the Department’s multimodal vision, and we welcome and encourage future connections throughout the state.”

“We’ve been getting lots of inquiries from people who would like to see the Rail Runner go farther north, and that’s a good indicator that more folks are discovering the convenience of what a system like this can bring to their area,” says Lawrence Rael, Executive Director of the Mid-Region Council of Governments. “One of the benefits of the Rail Runner service to Santa Fe is our ability to connect to Northern New Mexico. This shuttle is one example of how we can provide connections to communities in the north that have lasting impacts.”

The Taos Express will cost $10 round trip for adults; children 10 and under are free.  Taos Express rider connections to the Taos Chile Line Transportation Service will be free, in addition to extended service to Taos Ski Valley.  The Santa Fe station location is the New Mexico Rail Runner Railyard District Station on Guadalupe.  The shuttle stop in Taos is in the Loretto Free Parking Lot just off the Taos Plaza/Camino de la Placita – just a short walk to the center of downtown historic Taos. Taos Express travelers that connect with the Rail Runner and then buses in Santa Fe or Albuquerque will spend less than $15 one way or $30 round trip for a day or weekend of fun.

The Summer Schedule will be:

Thursday and Friday evenings:
Northbound: Leave Santa Fe at 6:30 p.m. (connect with the 5:46 p.m. northbound NMRR train #516); arrive in Taos at 8 p.m.
Southbound: Leave Taos at 4:40 p.m.; arrive in Santa Fe at 6:10 p.m. (connect with the 6:18 p.m. southbound NMRR train #517)
Saturday morning service:
Northbound: Leave Santa Fe at 11:30 a.m. (connect with the 11:15 a.m. northbound NMRR train #502); arrive in Taos at 1:00 p.m.
Southbound: Leave Taos at 6:25 a.m. arrive in Santa Fe at 7:50 a.m. (meet the 8:10 a.m. southbound NMRR train #503)
Saturday evening service:
Northbound: Leave Santa Fe at 6:25 p.m. (connect with the 6:03 p.m. northbound NMRR train #508); arrive in Taos at 8:10 p.m.
Southbound: Leave Taos at 4:20 p.m.; arrive in Santa Fe at 5:45 p.m. (connect with the 6:20 p.m. southbound NMRR train #511)

“Our intent, even during these difficult economic times, is to launch this service and work out how best tosustain it after its June through September pilot phase,” Mayor Cordova added. “The New Mexico Rail Runner service an exciting and successful addition for New Mexico – something we hope eventually comes further north.  In the interim, we want everyone – locals and visitors alike — to be able to access its service, and Taos, on weekends in a direct and relatively low cost manner.

“Whether you’re out to save money, reduce stress, be more ‘green’, enjoy the views, or simply experience the new transit services- the Taos Express is the ride for you.  I hope to see you in Taos this summer.”

For more information about the Taos Express, including sample itineraries and connections, go to www.taosexpress.com.

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