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The Pace suburban bus service reports that its ridership has dropped by more than half as the COVID-19 crisis forces more people to stay home.

Pace Communications Officer Maggie Daly Skogsbakken says ridership on fixed routs is down by 53% while on paratransit routes it’s off by 70%.

She says that, because schools are closed, the system has moved to “non-school service” on routes that are boosted during the school year. All special event runs are canceled, because the events themselves are cancelled.

Commuter bus schedules have been adjusted in response to Metra’s schedule changes. The bus line changes are available on the Pace website.

Skogsbakken says the agency is disinfecting its fleet daily and closing its indoor spaces to limit the virus’s spread.

She says the agency is encouraging riders to limit travel to essential trips and give other riders space for social distancing.

More information about Pace’s COVID-19 response is available online.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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