MGM Springfield, PVTA Introduce ‘the Loop’
SPRINGFIELD — MGM Springfield and the Pioneer Valley Transit Authority (PVTA) have joined forces to create the Loop — a new public transportation service linking downtown tourist attractions, hotels, restaurants, and arts and culture destinations to provide a more robust travel experience for Springfield visitors.
Debuting Aug. 24 as part of MGM Springfield’s opening day, the Loop will connect Springfield’s most storied landmarks, including Union Station, the Springfield Armory, Springfield Museums, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, and MGM Springfield.
The Loop schedule is designed with visitors in mind. In addition to stops at cultural highlights, the shuttle also will make stops at MassMutual Center, Holiday Inn Express, Sheraton, Hampton Inn, and La Quinta Inn & Suites. The Loop will run Wednesdays through Sundays from Union Station from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and complete a full circuit in 60 minutes during the day and 40 minutes in the evening. Traveling on the Loop will be free.
“The Loop is yet another sign that the city of Springfield is on the rise, and tourism is a vital component to its revitalization,” said Alex Dixon, general manager, MGM Springfield. “The Loop will be a welcome boost for tourist-oriented businesses. It will allow us to package the whole area as a consolidated travel destination rather than just individual attractions.”
Sandra Sheehan, administrator with the Pioneer Valley Transit Authority, noted that the Loop will be operated with a zero-emissions electric bus as part of PVTA’s goal of providing sustainable transportation.
As part of its host-community agreement, MGM Springfield will provide PVTA with financial support to operate and maintain the Loop. This includes maintenance and insurance of the vehicle, as well as the costs associated with the hiring, supervising, and compensating the driver.
“For the hospitality community, the Loop has always been a key component of the MGM Springfield project,” said Mary Kay Wydra, president of the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau. “The Loop introduces visitors to the many attractions that make Springfield special, provides access to MGM Springfield, and has the potential to increase visitor stays in the region.”