Deerfield bus shelters to go because of vandalism, bus stops remain same

Bus shelters will soon be removed from Deerfield Village Apartments because of repeated acts of vandalism.

Since being installed nearly eight years ago, the bus shelters have experienced an amount of "excessive" vandalism, costing the Isabella County Transportation Commission large amounts of money, according to a survey handed out to Deerfield residents on Oct. 25.

Dennis Adams, ICTC director of marketing and public relations, said Deerfield residents received the survey asking if they’d prefer to keep bus stops in the same locations without shelters, or if they’d like to move the bus stops to the main road where shelters can be installed.

“It’s not a big surprise. We’ve been talking about this for several years,” Adams said. “We no longer feel we can sustain (the shelters) by the history.”

Adams said more than 120 residents responded to the survey, and an overwhelming 86 percent said they’d like to keep the bus stops at the same spots, regardless of losing the bus shelters.

“The kids that use the service are not likely to damage their own shelter,” he said. “I don’t want to punish students using the service, but we’re not left with many good options. Pick up spots will still be the same but we can’t risk having further damage.”

Adams said the broken bus shelters in the back of the complex will be removed first. He said the rest of the shelters will be removed within the next week, as soon as the decision is fully approved by United Apartments.

Each shelter costs about $5,000, and for every glass pane the company has to replace due to damage costs an additional $250, Adams said.

“These are not inexpensive items,” he said. “It’s gotten to the point where we have to spend way more money than it costs.”

Adams said bus shelters are there to protect transportation users from standing outside in unfavorable weather conditions, but broken shelters no longer serve this purpose and, on top of money, it takes time for ICTC to fix the broken shelters.

Off-road locations, particularly in the back of apartment complexes, experience more damages because they’re hidden from the public.

United Apartments declined to comment.


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