“I love ShenGo” and “ShenGo is great” are two phrases heard during the county’s outreach efforts recently soliciting input from the public on the future of the county as part of the comprehensive plan update.
Celebrating its first year of service, ShenGo is Shenandoah County’s first public transportation system running between New Market and Strasburg. Maybe you have seen the bus stop signs or ShenGo buses themselves running north and south along Route 11?
Shenandoah County organizations and community leaders have long-identified the lack of transportation as an issue for many county residents. Kicking off the effort to find a solution, the Shenandoah County Chamber of Commerce developed a transit survey in 2017 showing overwhelming support for public transportation along Route 11. Following the survey, the Northern Shenandoah Valley Regional Commission conducted a transit feasibility study in 2019 to look at options for a public transportation system in Shenandoah County.
In October 2020, ShenGo launched, and in the first month, 400 riders took advantage of the $1 fare to get around the county. Since then, ridership has exceeded expectations with more than 1,000 riders a month and ridership steadily increases.
“We’re hearing from residents weekly as to how important the transit system is for them. It’s getting folks to work, it’s getting them to shopping, it’s getting them to medical appointments. It’s just worked beyond our expectations,”
~Sharon Baroncelli, President of the Shenandoah County Chamber of Commerce
Looking ahead, there is room for improvements to stop locations, but with overwhelming positive ridership feedback and increasing demand, we expect to see the ShenGo buses running for years to come.