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New VVTA Route: 'Godsend' for Needles, CA, Residents

Residents of Needles, CA, now have a public transit connection to the nearby cities of Barstow and Victorville—a round trip of more than 350 miles—with the recent introduction of service on the Victor Valley Transit Authority’s (VVTA) “Needles Link” route, which agency Executive Director Kevin Kane called “a worthwhile convenience for many residents of Needles and a godsend for some.”

VVTA spokesperson Fidel Gonzales explained that, while Needles has its own public transit system that operates one comprehensive route within the city limits, residents have not had public transit access to areas outside its borders. Needles does not have its own supermarket and insufficient health resources, he said, causing hardship for many residents. The bus service will provide much-needed access to these and other services.

The service is the result of collaboration among VVTA, Robert Lovingood, vice chair of the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors, and other agencies, and is part of the court’s ongoing effort to restore services that were reduced over the last several years for budget reasons.

The service operates with a single, 16-passenger vehicle, but VVTA will add more and/or larger buses as demand increases.

Cutting the ribbon for VVTA’s “Needles Link” route, from left: San Bernardino Superior Court Presiding Judge Raymond Haight, San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors Vice Chair Robert Lovingood, Needles Mayor Ed Paget, Needles Chamber of Commerce President Pam Blake, Needles City Council Member Shaun Gudmundson and Needles Vice Mayor Jeff Williams.


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