SERVICES: DA’s office reopens, bus service resumes

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 6:44pm

As the floodwaters receded from the heart of Nashville on Tuesday, many government agencies that have been limping along are beginning their ramp up to full capacity.

A “skeleton crew” of support staff and attorneys operated the Davidson County District Attorney’s office on Monday and Tuesday, but that will change when the office reopens and limited court dockets resume Wednesday.

Because of limited access to the Second Avenue office many prosecutors worked on call for the first part of the week, according to spokeswoman Susan Niland.

A District Attorney’s office satellite office in the Juvenile Justice Center suffered “serious damage” from flooding in that building’s bottom level, according to Niland. District Attorney employees from that office have temporarily moved into the Second Avenue office space.

Juvenile detention dockets were scheduled to resume Thursday at a yet-to-be-named offsite location. Felony and misdemeanor General Sessions court dockets will resume in the Criminal Justice Center for the rest of the week.

The Justice A.A. Birch Building closed due to water pressure issues from flooding downtown, and the building would likely remain closed through this week.

Cases not heard this week will be reset.

Trial court dockets at the A.A. Birch building were expected to be canceled through the duration of this week.

MTA bus service set to resume Thursday

Metropolitan Transit Authority plans to resume bus service Thursday, but routes will run on the Sunday/holiday schedule.

Routes and frequencies will be increased as maintenance and support facilities are established and equipped.

During this transition period the fares will be free on all Nashville MTA buses.

“Our staff has been working as quickly as possible to assess the damage to our facilities and equipment with the key goal of getting the buses and trains back in service as quickly as possible,” MTA/RTA Chief Executive Officer Paul J. Ballard said in a release. “We want to help our customers get to their jobs, physician’s offices, and other destinations as soon as possible.”

Customers, who are eligible for MTA’s AccessRide van services may begin rescheduling or booking new reservations for medical trips such as dialysis. This service will be provided for these types of emergency trips only. The fare also will be free.

Most of the regional bus services from outlying areas will resume on Thursday as well. The routes operated by Gray Line that include service from Franklin, Brentwood, Thompson’s Station, Spring Hill, Gallatin, and Hendersonville will be operating. However, this service will not be free. Fares will be collected as usual.

The route schedules are available online at the nashvillemta.org Web site under the schedules tab.

Music City Star still on hold

The Regional Transportation Authority’s Music City Star train will not resume service on Thursday. Officials are waiting on floodwaters to recede at the Riverfront Station and want to make a full assessment of the track and station.

The Nashville MTA facilities and the Music City Star’s Riverfront Station, both located on the banks of the Cumberland River, experienced severe flooding on Sunday and Monday that caused the disruption in service.

Customer call center employees are on duty at a temporary Metro office location to handle inquiries. The telephone number is 862-5950. AccessRide customers may call 880-3970, while RTA customers should call 862-8833.