Greendale — Transit passengers will have a longer walk to Southridge Mall starting Friday, when four routes will stop dropping passengers near Sears and instead use a stop on the edge of the property.
In September, The Simon Property Group — the mall's owner — announced that the bus stop would be removed due to safety concerns.
But moving the bus stop only creates more problems, local officials argue. On Oct. 23, the Milwaukee County Department of Transportation board unanimously agreed to refer the issue to Corporation Counsel for legal review.
"This will be a huge inconvenience for shoppers, some of whom are elderly, others who may have disabilities or are parents of small children," Milwaukee County supervisors Mark Borkowski and Michael Mayor wrote of the bus stop change in a news release. "This move will make it more difficult for Southridge employees, often low-paid employees, who may be bus-dependent."
The mall also plans to discontinue the park-and-ride service for the freeway flyer; that service will move to the existing park-and-ride Route 46 stop as of Friday.
The 1,000-foot distance from the new bus stop to the mall is a detriment to customers and employees, some county supervisors said.
"When you're talking about seniors and disabled people having to walk through traffic, in the winter weather — I mean, are you kidding me?" Supervisor Steve Taylor said at a Franklin Town Hall meeting last week. "What's safer: Seeing a big bus and knowing where it is or (seeing) some person walking through the parking lot, maybe without all their faculties and being slow?"
The counsel will determine whether the bus stop removal violates the Americans with Disabilities Act, Taylor said.
"Nov. 1 will come and we'll follow (the malls') directions so we're not trespassing, but I just think this isn't in their best interest," Taylor said. "You're alienating a huge segment of the population that are shoppers and you're also hurting the people in the businesses."
The village of Greendale will continue to work toward a bus route solution, Village Manager Todd Michaels said.
"Over the past three years the village has worked with the county and Southridge Mall in hopes of finding a mutually agreeable location for the buses that serve the mall area," Michaels said. "As a private property owner, the mall recently made the decision to move the bus stop to another location on their property. We continue to work with Southridge and the county."
Your link to the biggest stories in the suburbs delivered Thursday mornings.
Enter your e-mail address above and click "Sign Up Now!" to begin receiving your e-mail newsletter Get the Newsletter!
- Whitnall three-term incumbent won't seek re-election
- News & Notes: Dec. 5
- Police Report: Dec. 3
- Hales Corners taxes to increase slightly
- Police Report: Nov. 26
- Ice rink a reality in Hales Corners
- Rodriguez wins District 21 election
- Skowronski to face Hermes in District 82 battle
- Bearded dragons, other animals found living in squalor removed from Oak Creek home
- Police Report: Nov. 19