Madison Metro is completely updating its service starting on Sunday, June 11. The changes are due to the Metro Transit Network Redesign process that was completed last year and approved by the Common Council after 80 public meetings and 17 amendments taking into account comments from the public.

Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway held a press conference on Thursday, May 18, to introduce Metro’s new “Ride Guide” staff who will help guide the public through the transition. Over 50 Ride Guides will fan out around the City to help the public navigate the route and scheduling changes. Metro has not implemented such a major change to its routes and schedules in more than 25 years.

“Madison is changing. Employment centers are all over the city now, not just in the downtown area. Madison Metro is building a stronger system that will take more people to more places of employment with fewer transfers,” Mayor Satya said. “Many people will have questions. That’s where our new Ride Guides come in. Ride Guides will help find the closest available stop and identify which new route to take. They will be available to help people plan their new routes using maps or apps.”

New routes will provide more direct service with fewer transfers, and less time spent on the bus. This redesigned service will also help us get ready for our new bus rapid transit system that launches next year which will provide even more convenience and opportunity to get around the City and the region.

Despite all the positive things that the redesign will bring, it will still be an adjustment for all riders. Overnight on Saturday, June 10, most routes will switch from number to letters, transfer points will be closed, and all 2,000 of Metro’s stops will see some sort of change.

“We are excited about the opportunity the new routes will bring,” said Metro Transit’s General Manager Justin Stuehrenberg. “This change has taken a tremendous effort on the part of Metro staff and partners throughout the City. I want to thank everyone who has worked so hard to make this successful.”

Most Madison residents will be able to access significantly more destinations within a 45 minute trip as compared to today, and sometimes dramatically more. For people of color and those with lower incomes, the benefit is even greater.

On average, Black residents will see a 96% increase in access to jobs within 45 minutes. Latinx residents will see a 120% increase in access to jobs, and low income residents will see a 93% increase.

Look for Ride Guides in yellow vests in the coming days and weeks out riding buses and stationed at various stop locations throughout the City. Staff in Metro uniforms will also be available at busy stop areas to offer assistance and support.

And most importantly, Ride Guides will be out on the street on the first day of new service to help people get where they need to go as efficiently as possible.

“We know figuring out this new system will be an adjustment. We hope having these Ride Guides available as support will help with any concerns people may have as we get closer to our launch date,” said the Mayor.

We encourage everyone to talk to a Ride Guide and/or try to plan your trip ahead of time. You can plan your trip now at or using the Google Maps or Transit apps.

Plan your trip:
Google Maps
Transit App

Riders can also contact Metro’s customer service center at (608) 266-4466 or for help planning trips, to set up training sessions, or to request printed schedules and maps through the mail.

“We appreciate everyone’s patience and efforts as we implement such a transformational change. Please continue to provide us feedback on what is working and what isn’t so that we can make adjustments,” said Stuehrenberg.

*Originally this news release stated that routes will switch from letters to numbers when they will actually be switching from numbers to letters


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