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December 02, 2013

Megabus Returning to Stop Near UVM Despite Worries About Drug Runs


Megabus is moving its Burlington stop back to a location the company describes as being “adjacent” to Royall Tyler Theater on the University of Vermont campus. UVM had kicked the popular discount carrier off campus in early November following a series of drug busts involving Megabus passengers traveling to Vermont from New York City.

The new stop, which becomes operational tomorrow (December 3), is actually on University Place and “not within UVM’s control,” says university spokesman Enrique Corredera.

“We remain concerned about continuing criminal behavior and safety issues related to Megabus, and will work closely with law enforcement agencies to address risks to the safety of our community,” Corredera adds.

Megabus had been discharging and picking up passengers for its twice-daily New York and Boston runs in the rear parking lot of the Doubletree Hotel on Williston Road in South Burlington. The company had previously used stops at Royall Tyler, the Davis Center and near Marsh Hall on a campus access road.

Megabus spokesman Mike Alvich says the New Jersey-based company is “working very closely with authorities” to discourage use of its service by drug dealers bound for Burlington. “Our operations people have had conversations with all local authorities,” including Vermont Agency of Transportation officials, Alvich adds.

He also says that Megabus drivers are “taught how to look for signs of anything out of the ordinary.”

Defending the move to a stop on the edge of the UVM campus, Alvich offers this analogy: “When they arrest somebody for having drugs in a car, they don’t close down the thruway.”

About 10,000 travelers a month take Megabus to or from Burlington. Fares range from $1 for trips booked far in advance to as much as $45 — the price posted on Monday for a one-way ticket to New York City on New Year’s Day.

File photo of Megabus stopped in Saratoga by Megan James

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