4: Union Station - Shoppes at Blackstone Valley

March 7, 2022

It's been a little while since I last covered a WRTA route (that being the 42 to Oxford and Webster), and as I was creating another backlog, In realized that I should cover the 4 (as well as 2 other WRTA routes) here.

Last fall, I was covering all of the WRTA's "wack" routes, those that went to places that are a distance away from downtown Worcester. The WRTA also operates routes to the towns directly surrounding it, and the 4 is one of those routes.

The 4 serves Millbury. Millbury is a nice town. I frequently visit the town and sometimes see the bus. Millbury also has things for people to take the bus to. Millbury Center is a very walkable area with some local businesses located close to the bus route. The bus also serves the Shoppes at Blackstone Valley, an open-air shopping mall that is fucking hell to walk around. On its way to Millbury, the bus serves the Walmart in the southern part of Worcester as well. Connection is available to the 1 here.

The 4's schedule is ... uhh ... mediocre, with both strengths and weaknesses. The bus runs every 75 minutes on weekdays and every 60 - 75 minutes on weekends. On weekdays and Saturdays, service hours stretch from about 6:30 am to 9:45 pm. Sundays are very limited with service only running between 10 am and 5 pm. The mall is only served during the hours it's open, roughly between 10 am and 9 pm.

For a suburban part of the WRTA, I'd say this route is pretty good. The route also runs full-length buses, instead of minibuses as seen on the A and the B. Speaking of the A, the A runs right through Millbury Center, but doesn't allow stops here at all. Transfers from the A to the 4 and vise versa at the mall aren't that great either. I really like how it runs at 6 - 7 am, as well. Gets riders into the Worcester (and maybe even to Boston) early in the morning. I wish Sunday service was a little better though, considering how good Saturday service already is.


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