Have you ever noticed a gray bus that makes frequent stops at the Rush Rhees bus terminal every weekend but doesn’t look anything like the buses that regularly run through our school? That would be the Livingston Area Transportation Services bus, simply referred to as the LATS bus. It looks foreign to UR students because, technically, it is — the bus is operated out of the nearby town of Geneseo.
Its primary purpose is to provide SUNY Geneseo students, as well as Geneseo residents in general, transportation around their area. But on the weekends, the LATS bus route extends beyond its hometown. Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, the LATS bus provides Geneseo-to-Rochester service specifically for SUNY Geneseo students. This isn’t merely a back-and-forth ride between two campuses — instead, the LATS bus covers a surprisingly extensive number of Rochester hot spots. Some of its weekend stops, besides our own campus, include: Rochester Institute of Technology, the Eastview and Marketplace Malls, The Little Theatre, the Trailways, Greyhound and Amtrak loop, the Rochester airport and more. All in all, the LATS bus covers a little bit of ground from each of UR’s bus lines, as well as some unique places of its own.
Why, then, does UR not embrace the possibilities of this extra bus line? The Rush Rhees vestibule displays the full schedules of every UR bus line, but not the LATS schedule. The schedule is also not available anywhere on campus, even at the Campus Connection office in Wilson Commons. Even though the LATS bus comes to our school nearly a dozen times every weekend and goes to many points of student interest, UR hardly seems to acknowledge this service. Maybe that explains why, every so often, a few poor freshmen accidentally board a LATS bus, mistaking it for a UR bus and not realizing their mistake until they’re half an hour outside of Rochester. (It sounds ridiculous, but ask around — it happens every semester).
For UR students, the LATS bus has one very big disadvantage: While the service is free for SUNY Geneseo students, it costs $6.50 for all other riders (assuming the driver remembers to ask for student IDs), meaning the LATS is a luxury as well a convenience. But the University could, plausibly, work on a deal to extend the free service to UR students as well, seeing how our campus is one of the most popular stops on the route. However, before doing so, UR would need to take notice of this service and see how helpful it could be to UR students, who wish there were just a few more stops on the weekends.