LEWISTON — A partnership between Bath Iron Works and Western Maine Transportation Services will expand transportation between Lewiston and Bath starting April 24, according to a Wednesday news release from BIW parent company General Dynamics.

The new bus route is expected to make commuting easier and more affordable for BIW employees living in the Lewiston-Auburn and Lisbon Falls areas. Fares — $5 each way — will be funded in part through a $750,000 Maine Department of Transportation Workforce Transportation Pilot Program grant. The program was an effort by Gov. Janet Mills to support transportation solutions, the release said. Discounts will be available to those purchasing tickets in bulk and the service will also be available to the general public.

“Many of our employees come from the Lewiston-Auburn area and this bus will be a great option for them, helping them save money, reduce demand on parking, ease road congestion and have a positive impact on the environment,” BIW President Chuck Krugh said. “This is a good example of the public-private partnerships needed to tackle the challenges facing workers as well as employers,” he said.

BIW has been working on solutions aimed at reducing demand on transportation networks and parking, the release said. BIW runs shuttles from remote parking lots, supports van pools and parking space and works with GO Maine promoting shared transportation. Western Maine Transportation Services has provided transit options in Androscoggin, Oxford and Franklin counties for over 40 years, including commuter buses in Farmington, for Brunswick Link and for the Lewiston-Auburn Citylink bus service.

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