The highly successful Virginia Breeze intercity bus service, which has operated between Blacksburg and Washington, D.C. since 2017, has expanded to the West Piedmont Planning District. Specifically, the new service, which began Friday, August 7th, serves the cities of Martinsville and Danville in our region.
The new daily service, named “Piedmont Express,” comprises two new routes. The first route departs Martinsville, via the Village of Martinsville shopping center, 240 Commonwealth Blvd (formerly known as the Liberty Fair Mall), at 6:45 a.m., from which it continues east, stopping at Danville’s Transit Hub at 515 Spring Street. From there, this route continues east along U.S. Route 58 and Route 360 to Richmond’s Main Street Station, from which it again departs at 11:05 a.m. on its way to Washington, D.C.’s Union Station. Stops in between Danville and Richmond include South Boston and Farmville. The southbound bus departs Union Station in Washington, D.C. at 1:05 p.m., Richmond at 3:25 p.m., and arrives in Martinsville at about 7:40 p.m.
The second Virginia Breeze Piedmont Express route departs Danville’s Spring Street Transit Hub at 8:00 a.m. daily, traveling north along the U.S. Route 29 corridor. Following departure from Danville, the route’s stops include Altavista, Lynchburg, Amherst, Charlottesville, Culpeper, Warrenton, Gainesville, Dulles International Airport, and at around 2:30 p.m., terminates at Washington, D.C.’s Union Station. The return trip departs Union Station in Washington, D.C. at 10:15 a.m. and arrives in Danville at about 4:40 p.m.
Piedmont Express fares are reasonably-priced. A fare search on the Virginia Breeze website shows that the next day’s fare for a trip from Martinsville to Danville is listed as $14.99, while a trip from Martinsville to Richmond is listed as $29.99, and a trip from Danville to Washington, D.C. is listed as $41.99.
The Virginia Breeze is operated by the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT), which contracts with Megabus for the service. Amenities provided by the bus service include restrooms, a storage area for luggage, free WiFi, and outlets to plug in devices. To keep its passengers safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, Megabus requires that masks be worn by passengers, sanitizes its buses on a regular basis, and ensures that each passenger will have an open seat next to them. The last inter-city bus company to serve the region was Greyhound, which discontinued service to Danville in 2016.
To learn more about the Virginia Breeze Piedmont Express service, as well as to view schedules and purchase tickets, please visit https://virginiabreeze.org/. An important note regarding the stop at Village of Martinsville is that, when I observed the bus arrive there in the evening recently, it stopped toward the back of the parking lot just west of Belk, between Belk and Goodwill.