METRO Safety Measures and Service Modifications in Response to COVID-19

METRO Service Modifications

Protecting the health and safety of our riders, employees, contractors and visitors is METRO's No. 1 priority. We encourage you to use public transit for only essential trips.


All METRO riders, employees, contractors and visitors are required to wear a face covering, unless prevented by a medical condition. Learn more in the safety measures section below.

As a result of enhanced safety measures, fare collection has resumed. Learn more in the fares section below.


All METRO employees, contractors, riders and visitors while on or using METRO’s services, system, and property must:


1. Wear a facial covering that covers the mouth and nose to the extent medically practicable;

2. Engage in social distancing when possible to maintain a distance of at least six (6) feet between persons to the extent medically practicable, unless such persons are in the company of immediate family, household members, and/or a personal care attendant;

3. Submit to and pass a temperature and health screening for applicable symptoms of COVID-19 before entry into a METRO facility or building; and

4. Not enter or use METRO’s services, system and property if such person currently has, or is exhibiting known or suspected symptoms of, COVID-19 or another infectious disease that endangers public health.


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Additional safety measures are being implemented on local bus routes, light rail, Park & Rides and METROLift.


Protective shields

Placed around drivers’ seats, this adds another layer of separation between operators and riders.


Hand sanitizer

Operators and riders will have access to hand sanitizer on METRO buses, trains and METROLift vehicles.


Seating reductions

Additional adjustments have reduced customer seating by 50 percent and allow you to spread out while on board:

  • Seats on buses and METRORail have been tagged as unavailable to encourage social distancing
  • When buses reach 50 percent seating, digital signs will advise you to wait for the next bus


METRO will continue:

  • Putting an even greater emphasis on disinfecting surfaces frequently touched by the public during our daily bus and rail cleaning
  • Frequent cleaning of bus shelters and rail platforms
  • Displaying posters along the system reminding riders of public health officials' recommendations to stop the spread of germs
  • Displaying signs and notifications at transit centers, Park & Ride lots and rail stations, encouraging you to practice responsible social distancing
  • Running safety announcements on rail platforms and buses
  • Including safety messages on bus destination signs
  • Communicating safety messages on service alerts
  • Remaining in close and continuous communication with local public health and emergency management officials to monitor developments
  • Evaluating the threat of this virus and responding appropriately
  • Providing service, and doing so safely

Schedules as of May 31

Local bus routes will continue to run on a modified Saturday Schedule seven (7) days a week.

  • Red and Blue routes will be reduced to service every 30 minutes
  • Green routes will follow their normal Saturday schedule
  • Community Connector routes will continue to operate
  • Extra buses have been added to many of our busier bus routes to encourage social distancing. Please view our Bus Schedules page for the latest.

Route color designations can be found on bus stop signs and on this METRO local bus route color chart.

Get alerted to service changes and reductions by subscribing to receive service alerts for the route(s) of your choice. We’ll send real-time, personalized route information straight to your phone or email for free. It takes just seconds to subscribe.

Schedules as of May 14

All Park & Ride routes serving the Texas Medical Center remain operational. Each runs on weekdays only, and operates on a regular weekday schedule:

170/171 Missouri City Express / Fort Bend Town Center – view schedule
292 West Bellfort / Westwood / TMC – view schedule
297 South Point / Monroe / TMC – view schedule
298 Kingsland / Addicks / Northwest Transit Center / TMC – view schedule


291
Conroe Park & Ride will only run 6:30 a.m. inbound and 4:30 p.m. outbound trips.


The following Park & Ride routes serving Downtown are running limited service:

209 North Freeway (modified) – view schedule
217 Cypress – view schedule
219 Northwest Freeway (modified no Cypress) – view schedule
222 Grand Parkway – view schedule
229 Katy Freeway (modified no Grand Parkway) – view schedule
236 Maxey / Baytown – view schedule
249 Gulf Freeway (modified) – view schedule
259 Eastex Freeway (modified) – view schedule
265 West Bellfort – view schedule
269 Southwest Freeway (modified no West Bellfort) – view schedule



All other Park & Ride service is suspended.


*NOTE* - METRO is running a TMC Shuttle service from the Smith Lands Parking Lot to hospitals throughout the Texas Medical Center. The shuttle arrives every 10 minutes, and operates on weekdays only during peak times in mornings and afternoons.


Shuttle stops, in order:

- Fannin and Dryden (Texas Children’s Hospital, CHI St. Luke’s)
- Fannin and University (Houston Methodist)
- John Freeman and Bertner (Baylor College of Medicine)
- Bertner and Bates (Texas Heart Institute, MD Anderson)
- Pressler St. between Main St. and W. Holcombe (Texas A&M Health Science Center) – evening hours only

Schedules as of May 26


Red Line: Weekdays - operating on normal Monday-Thursday schedule, every 6 minutes; Weekends – operating on a modified Sunday schedule, every 12 minutes

Purple Line (Palm Center Transit Center – Theater District): operating on a modified Sunday schedule, every 18 minutes

Green Line (Magnolia Park Transit Center – Theater District): operating on a modified Sunday schedule, every 18 minutes


As of March 30

The number of passengers in each vehicle has been reduced to allow for social distancing. This may extend wait times.  

As of May 11

HOV/HOT lanes along Interstate 45, U.S. Highway 59, and U.S. Highway 290 West, which were temporarily closed in late March, have resumed normal operations. Toll charges for use of the lanes has resumed as well.

For more information, view the news release >>

As a result of enhanced safety measures, fare collection has resumed for:

  • Local bus
  • METRORail
  • Park & Ride
  • METROLift
  • Community Connector services

Front door boarding and exiting has also resumed, and boarding from the rear door is no longer allowed.

To accommodate demand for fare purchases, the METRO RideStore at 1900 Main is open. Before entering, you’ll be required to:

  • Use a designated entrance
  • Wear a mask
  • Have your temperature checked


For answers to common questions about fares (including fare costs, payment methods, where to buy fares and more), please visit our fare collection page.

While METRO uses an antibacterial disinfectant to clean vehicles and facilities, self-care is still the best protection. It is important that you rely on credible sources for information and follow the guidance of health officials who suggest the following:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds (If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol)
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces with a regular household spray or wipes
  • Practice social distancing – keep distance between yourself and others
  • When coughing or sneezing, cover your nose and mouth with tissue or your arm
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose & mouth with unwashed hands
  • If you feel sick, stay home and contact your healthcare provider before returning to work
  • If you travel internationally and you return home with symptoms of COVID-19, please check with your doctor
  • Learn how to make your own face covering, based on CDC guidelines


Download METRO’s brochure on how to make a face covering (PDF)

If you have questions about coronavirus, please call the COVID-19 hotline staffed by the Houston Health Department…

Phone: 832-393-4220

Hours of operation:
Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-7 p.m.
Saturday 9 a.m.-3 p.m.