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JIS News

The Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC) has re-introduced the Half- Way-Tree to Seaview Gardens bus route. The route, which was traversed by the Jamaica Omnibus Service (JOS) in the eighties, was discontinued because of violence within the area.
According to Communications Manager at the Ministry of Transport and Works, Reginald Allen, the JUTC has been assessing areas where service could be extended and the Seaview Gardens route was chosen. “It’s out of recognition of a need [and] it was recognized that the Seaview Gardens area is a large dormitory community, where a lot of people leave to go to work and school in the mornings and evenings,” he explained.
Mr. Allen informed that currently, to get to Half-Way-Tree, residents have to take two illegal taxis – one to Three Miles and another from there to Half-Way Tree – but with the re-introduction of bus service, commuters will now pay one fare to get straight to Half-Way-Tree. “There is a bus that carries commuters from Seaview to downtown but there was no route prior to this one that carried people from Seaview to Half-Way-Tree,” he informed.
This new route will be traversed by the number 50 bus at a cost of $50 to passengers. The bus will run from 4:30 am to 9:30 am and resume between
1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. and go up to 8:00 p.m. The timeframe, Mr. Allen said, will be assessed over time to determine any adjustments.
As it relates to concerns about a recurring flare-up of violence within the area, Mr. Allen said that a lot has changed over time and so has Seaview Gardens. “Yes, there is still violence, but in the old days, you had more violence. People view things differently and you find that access to these communities is much more open now than they have been in the past,” he said, adding, “we have no problems. The waters have been tried and tested and in fact, the people are so very receptive. They see the need for the service.”
The Communications Manager noted that the roads in the community were in fairly good condition. “There is a small part of the road that is in a fairly bad condition and things will be done to address it [but] for the most part, the road is good,” he assured.