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The Merrimack Valley Regional Transit Authority (MVRTA) is your public transportation service. The MVRTA serves the northeast corner of Massachusetts with over 1 million miles of scheduled bus routes, and elderly and disabled transportation.

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Transit Alerts

Lawrence-based routes renumbering as follow:

Rte. 5 Water Street via Hancock & Mason Streets
• Route #35 will be route #5 and will:
o  Serve to Hancock Courts, in both the Outbound and Inbound, with service relocated
from Melrose St to Hancock/Mason street

Rte. 6 Holy Family Hospital via Hampshire & Lawrence Streets
• Route #36 will be route #6 and will:
o Provide direct service to Holy Family Hospital, Methuen
o Serve Valebrook Apartments and GLFHC in the outbound, with service relocated from Jackson St to Union St.
o No longer utilize Berkely/Jackson/Swan/East streets on the outbound

Rte. 12 Lawrence Crosstown
• Route #85 will be route #12 and will:
o Provide earlier service start time
o Added morning trips at 7:00AM & 7:30AM

Rte. 14 Bradford/Wardhill
• Inbound service towards Haverhill Transit Station will be relocated from Bailey Boulevard to Merrimack St


Rte. 15 Hilldale / Westgate
o Service extended to Broadway Business Park
o Route #15 Outbound will turn into the #16 Inbound at Westgate Plaza for direct service back to Haverhill Transit via Washington St

Rte. 16 Washington / Westgate
o Route #16 Outbound will turn into the #15 Inbound at Westgate Plaza for continued service to the Broadway Business Park and Target, returning to Haverhill Transit via Hilldale
o Carleton St will be served by the #15 only


Rte. 19 Newburyport – Amesbury
o Will provide direct service to Stop & Shop in Amesbury
o Inbound service towards Commuter Rail Station will be relocated from State St Extension to Pond St/Graf Rd in Newburyport
o Outbound service from Commuter Rail Station will be relocated from Summer St to Federal St to better serve downtown Newburyport

Rte. 20 Newburyport – Salisbury Beach
o Inbound service towards Commuter Rail Station will be relocated from State St Extension to Pond St/Graf Rd in Newburyport
o Outbound service from Commuter Rail Station will be relocated from Summer St to Federal St to better serve downtown Newburyport

Rte. 23 BEACH EXPRESS:  Lawrence – Salisbury Beach
Route will begin at McGovern, where riders will receive a voucher to park FREE!!!
From McGovern, the route will continue to Buckley/Downtown Lawrence, before proceeding up Rt. 110 Exit 104 of I-495 for express service to the Beach
• Schedule:
• Morning:        Leaves McGovern at ……………………. 9:15AM & 11:15AM
Leaves Buckley at ………………………… 9:25AM & 11:25AM
Leaves Jackson St/Swan St at ………. 9:30AM & 11:30AM
• Afternoon:   Leaves Salisbury Beach at …………… 3:00PM & 5:00PM


Good News Lawrence!


Starting Tuesday September 6, 2022, all buses out of Lawrence operate every half hour, with departures out of the Buckley Transportation Center on the hour & half hour,

M-F 5:00AM-7:00PM!!!

The Merrimack Valley Regional Transit Authority (MVRTA) board voted unanimously to go fare-free for all local fixed routes and EZ Trans paratransit services starting March 1, 2022 for at least 2 years.  Fares will still be collected on the Boston Commuter bus.

Latest News

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HAVERHILL – Life doesn’t end at 7pm, and thanks to a boost in state funding from the Massachusetts Legislature and Governor Healey, MeVa’s buses won’t either. Starting on September 5, MeVa’s six highest ridership routes will be running two hours later into the evening.

MeVa bus rider and Elevated Thought Development Strategist Sara Morin was effusive about the later service: “I’m really excited about later night buses,” she said, noting that “it’s a great option not just for me, but for students taking classes at Northern Essex, workers getting off their shifts at the plazas, and anyone who needs a safe way to get home.”

Lawrence Mayor Brian A. DePeña is a big fan of the extended service, stating: “Giving good quality services to our residents, especially in terms of transportation with extended service until 9:00 pm, is a sign that we are taking our city on the right path. Thank you MeVa for thinking about our City of Lawrence.”

The routes that will be running later are the #1, which connects Lawrence with Haverhill via the Loop, the #2, which connects Lawrence with Andover via South Broadway, the #9, which connects Lawrence with North Andover via Phillips Street, the #10, which connects Lawrence with Methuen via Broadway, the #13, which connects Haverhill with Plaistow NH via Main Street and North Avenue, and the #24, which connects Lawrence with Lowell via Route 110. Buses will depart from MeVa’s Transportation Centers at Buckley and Washington Square at 8 and 9pm, returning by 10pm.

MeVa Transit is one of 15 Regional Transit Authorities or RTAs across Massachusetts, which together serve the majority of communities in the state. For the past six years RTAs had been level funded in the state budget, which had prevented MeVa and other transit authorities from expanding service to meet the needs of the communities they service. That changed on August 9, when Governor Healey signed the $55.98 billion 2024 state budget, including an $56 million increase in funding for RTAs. With the added dollars, Massachusetts RTAs finally have the resources to deliver a baseline of service that brings transit equity to areas outside Boston and Route 128.

MeVa Chief Communications Officer Niorka Mendez noted that “for a long time riders and community groups have been asking us for later evening service and we’ve been listening. We are thrilled to be able to put this new funding to work to provide the service our community needs and deserves.”

MeVa did not waste any time putting these new dollars to work for the region. Thanks to a lot of hard work and creativity by MeVa’s human resources team, the agency has been able to buck a national trend and successfully recruit and retain a full staff of professional drivers. As a result, MeVa was able to immediately utilize these new dollars to extend service in an unprecedented four weeks.

While the extended hours are a great first step, MeVa readily acknowledges that there is still more work to be done to ensure riders have access to high quality public transportation. In addition to later service hours, riders have also been asking for Sunday service, which MeVa anticipates being able to begin in January, 2024

About MeVa Transit:

MeVa Transit is the regional transportation agency for 16 communities along the Merrimack River from Andover to the seacoast. MeVa Transit runs fixed service buses and paratransit vans (mini MeVa) with service hubs in Lawrence, Haverhill, and Amesbury. In March of 2022, the MeVa board voted to go fare-free systemwide in a move to encourage ridership and alleviate some of the financial burden shouldered by residents in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to free-fares, MeVa rebranded all their vans and buses, doubled service on Lawrence-based routes, extended service into Groveland, and optimized routing to improve efficiency. Since going fare free, fixed route bus ridership through March 2023 has increased 226.1% and has now exceeded pre-pandemic levels by 4.5 percentage points. On the paratransit side, March 2023 ridership has increased 175.3% and has now exceeded pre-pandemic levels by 9.7 percentage points. For routes, schedules, and more information about MeVa Transit bus services, visit www.mevatransit.com.


Lawrence, MA.  A fresh splash of color has hit the Merrimack Valley and, perhaps surprisingly, the source is the local transit authority. The first hints of the rebranding of the Merrimack Valley Regional Transit Authority (MVRTA) as MeVa-Merrimack Valley Transit are the bright new buses, bedazzled in coral, aqua and yellow that can now be spotted along local roadways. MVRTA will officially unveil its new look buses, logo and name at a ribbon cutting event on Thursday, October 20 at the Buckley Transportation Center in Lawrence.

The impetus for the rebranding started over a year ago, when then-newly-appointed MVRTA Administrator Noah Berger and Communications Director Niorka Méndez-Almonte started going to community groups to access where the service was doing well and where it was falling short. Through their conversations, it quickly became clear that MVRTA was invisible to many of their potential riders. As Berger notes, “people who could use our service either didn’t know we were here or thought of us as irrelevant. For many reasons, our vehicles blended into the woodwork—of course it doesn’t help that we have the same color scheme as a mail truck!”

With a goal of increasing visibility and ridership, MVRTA put together a diverse focus group and began asking what the community wanted their buses to look like. Participants originally hailing from the Caribbean and Latin America shared that they were used to colorful, dynamic buses that do a much better job of getting people’s attention. Working with Studio Six Branding, which had been successful rebranding other transit authorities such as the Hop in Boulder Colorado, the focus group, along with additional stakeholders including drivers and riders, settled on a new design and name in May that better reflects the cultural and linguistic richness of the area, with special homage to what makes the Merrimack Valley unique and special. The colors are inspired by housing in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, while subtle ripples and water droplets honor the Merrimack River and abstracted clockfaces mirror the clocks adorning many of the area’s historic mill buildings.

The new name, MeVa, short for Merrimack Valley, was seen as hipper and easier to say than MVRTA. With the tag line “Let’s go/íVamos!” prominently displayed on the buses, the system is especially welcoming to its many Spanish-speaking riders. Méndez-Almonte proudly observed that: “Being Latina, born and raised in the Dominican Republic, I feel connected to the new brand, the cheery and happy colors perfectly reflect the Hispanic culture. I am sure I am not the only one who feels this way.”

The new look is much more than mere cosmetics and supports a dramatic campaign to improve service, including going fare free systemwide back in March, doubling frequencies in Lawrence beginning last month, optimizing routings and adding bus stops. Through September, ridership is up 97.9% since going fare free and growing. Nine of the newly wrapped buses have been plying the streets of the Merrimack Valley since last week and the area has taken notice, as evidenced by posts of sightings on social media as if the new buses were exotic birds. After the initial launch, the authority will continue to work on wrapping the rest of the fleet. MVRTA was established back in 1974 and has had the same look ever since. It is time for a fresh look that reflects and supports a new, responsive and welcoming twenty-first century transit service.

August 22, 2022


Lawrence, MA.  For the first time in the history of the Merrimack Valley Regional Transit Authority (MVRTA), all Lawrence-based bus routes will operate every 30 minutes, all day long, starting September 6, 2022. Historically, MVRTA buses in Lawrence only ran every 30 minutes during peak hours, with hourly service at all other times. For many riders, this proved to be confusing, as they were unsure when buses were running every half hour and when they were running hourly. Keeping a consistent 30-minute service all day long not only makes the schedule easier to understand, it also better reflects the reality that riders need the bus throughout the day and are not likely operating on a banker’s 9-5 schedule.

Since July, all service was only running hourly except for routes #1 and #41, due to a national driver shortage.  Thanks to an aggressive recruitment campaign and a top salary of $27.61/hour, MVRTA has been able to overcome the driver shortage and add new operators over the summer who will be deployed in September. Buses will operate every half hour out of the Buckley Transportation Center on Common Street from 5:00 AM until 7:00 PM on weekdays.  Saturday service will continue to run hourly, from 7:00 AM until 6:00 PM.

With this service improvement, people living, working or visiting Lawrence, Methuen, Haverhill, Andover and North Andover will have more flexibility when using public transportation. MVRTA Communications Director Niorka Mendez noted that “Adding more frequency will not only make our system more reliable, it will also improve the rider experience. Riders will no longer need to check the schedule to make sure they don’t miss the bus and wait for an hour for the next bus—they will know that the bus will show up every half hour.”

Rider Ana Salinas added that “Having the half hour pulse extended for longer hours helps with my time management and makes it that much easier and faster to get around.”

In planning this change, MVRTA worked closely with Lawrence Mayor Brian De Peña, who was very enthusiastic about the improved schedule, noting that the more frequent service will be a great benefit for area businesses: “I applaud the decision that MVRTA made to provide a more efficient and faster bus service in our city. This determination will definitely have a positive impact in our community by making our transportation system even more reliable.”

The new schedule is part of a larger campaign to make MVRTA service more responsive to riders’ travel needs, and be more visible and accessible. Back in March, all MVRTA buses went fare free, resulting in a 71.48% ridership increase.  Starting in April, MVRA began optimizing routings, starting with routes 35, 36 and 37, by making routes simpler and more direct.  As Administrator Noah Berger observed, “the 37 bus used to literally travel in a figure eight, which meant that in many instances, you couldn’t return to where you initially got on the bus. And since travel times are decreased, we are better respecting our passengers’ time.”  MVRTA will also be introducing bus stop signs and, through a grant from MassDOT’s Shared Streets Program, bus shelters, which will remove the intimidation of waiting for a bus. Finally, later this fall, MVRTA will introduce a new colorful bus design and logo that will add to the visibility and attractiveness of riding system.

Media Contact:

Niorka Mendez

Director of Communications

[email protected]

(978) 469-6878  Extension 116