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New Cap Metro route will use MoPac Express Lanes

Beginning Monday, you'll start to see Capital Metro buses in the new express lanes on MoPac. (CBS Austin)

Beginning Monday, you'll start to see Capital Metro buses in the new express lanes on MoPac.

A new route, MetroExpress Route 980, will leave from both the Wells Branch area in north Austin and downtown Round Rock. They're intended to get commuters downtown faster.

There will be 11 trips in the morning and 11 trips back in the evening. Most of those trips will leave from New Life Austin Church. Two trips both directions will pick up riders and leave from the downtown Round Rock park and ride.

The buses will use the express lanes on Mopac, avoiding traffic and make a limited number of stops.

"I definitely see this as a benefit to the community," said Tom Coker with Head to Heart, a ministry based counseling service in Round Rock.

He believes folks looking for work will now have more options, and those needing to get to and from Round Rock and downtown can do so, for less.

"When people are just barely getting by, those dollars that it takes to get from A to B make a huge difference," said Coker. "So if there is a cost effective way to get to their location, that's a huge benefit."

Coker said clients have had to cancel appointments or lose opportunities because of a lack of transportation or traffic.

"For them to be able to get here and get the services they need is great," said Coker.

Other routes now servicing Round Rock throughout the day include routes 50, 51, and 52. Those services began in late August.

The buses will be using the express lanes free of charge, which means riders' price will stay consistent. It will cost $3.50 one way or $7 round trip.

Cap Metro plans to add at least three more express trips that will use the new Mopac express lanes beginning in January.

For more on the routes, click here.

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