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KEY WEST (FKNB)  — Just in time for the Labor Day holiday weekend, the free Duval Loop bus service debuted in Key West Thursday, providing residents and visitors a convenient way to get around downtown and the Historic Seaport without using their cars.

Designed to reduce traffic and parking challenges on island streets, the service is a project of Car-Free Key West. The city campaign promotes healthier and more eco-friendly alternatives to driving such as walking, bicycling and public transit.

“This is part of what Key West has been working on for a long time — issues with parking and our visitors being able to go one end of Duval Street to the other,” said Key West Mayor Craig Cates. “We’re doing our part to get cars off the street and keeping our carbon footprint as small as possible.”

The hop-on, hop-off service features colorful buses with a route that includes 16 stops, so riders can get on and off near Key West attractions, hotels, museums, boutiques and eateries.

As well as benefiting visitors, the Duval Loop is convenient for commuting residents, who can leave their cars in parking lots and catch the free bus to downtown workplaces.

Buses run every half-hour from 6 to 10 a.m., and every 15 minutes from 10 a.m. until midnight.

The Duval Loop is scheduled to operate Thursday to Sunday through November, and daily during the Florida Keys winter tourism season.

(©2017 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Florida Keys News Bureau contributed to this report.)


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