Macomb’s Go West Transit System says it has now carried its 20 millionth rider since the service started in 1999.
Director Jude Kiah says there has been a dramatic rise in non-university riders from 10 thousand a year a little bit more than a decade ago to 350 thousand this year.
He said the system now goes far beyond a single campus parking lot, delivering passengers to anywhere in Macomb within half an hour.
"When we started this system it was entirely about moving students across Q lot, I mean that was the original idea, and we have grown to (be) an economic driver," Kiah said.
He said people are able to take their kids to and from school, and get to work without using their own cars.
Kiah said Go West serves the same number of riders per day as the Quad Cities’ bus system and more than the systems in Springfield, Decatur and Bloomington.
Stacie Wear was named the twenty millionth rider at a ceremony at Go West's Travel Center on East Pierce.
She said she rides the bus nearly every day, and would not have the same independence or mobility without Go West.