OurBus to Seek to Fill Gap Left by Hoosier State Demise

A New York-based bus line will seek to fill the void being left when Amtrak’s Hoosier State is discontinued on July 1 between Chicago and Indianapolis.

OurBus announced that it will operate service between the two cities for two months on a trial basis to test the market.

The company might face some stiff competition as Greyhound has eight roundtrips daily between Chicago and Indianapolis while Megabus has six roundtrips.

“We know the train is being taken away,” said OurBus co-founder Alxel Hellman. “We think it means there are a lot of people who are looking for a new transportation option. The routes can go wherever they need to be.”

OurBus plans to lease buses from Gold Shield Transportation in Indianapolis. The buses will have reclining seats and WiFi.

Hellman described them as “high-end buses” that are typically chartered for business conferences or traveling sports teams.

The OurBus service will initially only serve Chicago and Indianapolis, but Hellman said if 100 or more people express interest in a stop by going to the company’s website the service will add it to the schedule.

The Hoosier State, which operates quad-weekly on days that Amtrak’s Chicago-New York Cardinal does not operate, serves intermediate stations in Indiana at Crawfordsville, Lafayette, Rensselaer and Dyer.

The initial fare will be $10 but increase to between $20 and $40.

Although schedules and boarding sites are still being worked out, OurBus said the daily roundtrip will leave Indy in the morning and Chicago in the evening, similar to the current schedule of the Hoosier State.

OurBus has 15 regular routes, mostly in the Northeast and Southeast. This would be the company’s first route in the Midwest.

Hellman said his company, which was founded in 2016, is different from other bus lines because it can quickly adapt to changing needs.

He said OurBus also can offer flexible routes that only run some days of the year to serve, for example, college students returning home to campus before or after semester breaks.

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One Response to “OurBus to Seek to Fill Gap Left by Hoosier State Demise”

  1. Rail Provocateur Says:

    Frankly, given the dismal ridership level, pathetic elongated schedule, and lateness, it’s a safe bet few, if any, will really miss the “Hoosier State.” Will Amtrak even bother to continue utilizing that train’s consist to/from Indy on the tri-weekly “Cardinal”?

    As Amtrak determines how to threaten and vent its rage against Indiana for cutting the subsidy to what was merely Amtrak’s “hospital train” to/from Beech Grove, more importantly, what should be of concern to Amtrak is the real potential now for unraveling the mystique behind PRIIA. Ideally, the “Hoosier State” will be the first long thread pulled from the sweater to see it totally unravel.

    In essence, who, when, and why was it determined to create PRIIA to subsidize the (free) operation of intercity trains along the NEC through the excessive cost allocation and requisite payments for non-NEC state corridors?

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