By ERIN MURDOCK/Montana State News

The Streamline Bus Service celebrated its 2 millionth rider on Feb. 3. Providing free public transportation, the Streamline has become a widely used resource for Bozeman residents.

The Streamline, which began in 2006 through the Human Resource Development Center (HRDC), serves the greater Bozeman area. Five different routes run during the week as well as a Saturday schedule and a late-night downtown schedule that runs Thursday through Sunday evenings.

Associated Students of Montana State University (ASMSU) Latenight Streamline Director EJ Hanson said that bus drivers track the number of Streamline riders using a tablet to record each individual that enters their bus. As the number of patrons grew closer to 2 million, Hanson and others began to plan for the celebration of the 2 millionth rider.

In preparation for the celebration, donations were gathered from ASMSU, Montana State University and HRDC and assembled into a prize. When the two millionth rider exited the Streamline bus in front of the Strand Union Building, he was greeted by representatives who handed him the MSU themed prize.

“ASMSU was really one of the first partners HRDC had that helped get the Streamline going. They are one of our very key partners,” David Kack, the HRDC board chair, said.

MSU students, staff and faculty constitute a large percentage of the users, utilizing the Streamline for transportation to and from MSU. According to Kack, “Around 48 percent of the riders are MSU students and about 14 percent are MSU faculty and staff.”

“The Streamline is a valuable service for the Bozeman community and MSU … We are hoping to see ridership continue to increase,” Marianne Brough, ASMSU director of operations, said.

Carsten Kirby, ASMSU senator and liaison to the Streamline said that he and the two other Streamline liaisons work closely with Hanson and HRDC to ensure everything is running smoothly. “It is really exciting that we have reached our two millionth rider and it’s great to see ridership increasing,” Kirby said.

This is not the first time the Streamline has celebrated a milestone and it will not be the last. Kack said that in the past they have celebrated the Streamlines fifth year anniversary as well as the one millionth rider and will likely celebrate the tenth year anniversary and the three millionth rider in the future.

More information on the Streamline Bus Service can be found at streamlinebus.com.

– Edited by Brett Nelson

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