Transit Guide: Opening Day in the D

This Thursday is the Detroit Tigers home opener. The following is a comprehensive guide for getting to and getting around downtown Detroit without a car. (This blog is for information only and is in no way affiliated with TransitApp, SMART, DDOT, QLine, People Mover or MoGo.)

Step one: Download TransitApp. With this app you can get transit directions using bus, Qline Detroit, the People Mover, MoGo bikes, Uber or Lyft. You can even locate & use scooters with this app.

Step two: Download the DART App. You can use it to pay for the bus or streetcar and just show the driver your phone when you enter. DART passes are good for 4-hours of unlimited trips & transfers between any bus or streetcar.

TransitApp will show you all nearby transit options and give you multi-modal directions.

DDOT Bus — $2.00 per person (good for 4 hours)

SMART Bus — $2.00 per person (good for 4 hours)

QLine Detroit — $2.00 per person (good for 4 hours)*

Detroit People Mover — $0.75 per person (per ride)*

MoGo Detroit — $1 to unlock, $0.25 per minute or $18 for a 2-hour pass

*People Mover & QLine Detroit are currently suspended due to COVID-19

If you live outside of Detroit, you can drive to a SMART bus Park & Ride and take the bus. Which bus? The FAST Bus!

SMART’s FAST bus routes

What is a FAST bus? FAST stands for Frequent, Affordable, Safe, Transit and is a newer service from SMART Bus. Buses run frequently and make limited stops to keep service moving quickly on Gratiot, Woodward & Michigan Ave. Gratiot & Woodward buses run until (1am Mon-Sat and 9pm Sun) and Michigan Ave bus to DTW runs until (12am M-Sat & 9pm Sun).

Official Park & Ride lots are in Chesterfield, Mt. Clemens, Troy, Dearborn and Detroit. You can also park in Pontiac, Somerset and Macomb Mall but they are not official Park & Ride lots. All FAST routes end downtown Detroit at Spirit Plaza. From there you can transfer to DDOT #4-Woodward, The People Mover, QLine or FAST Woodward to reach Grand Circus Park.

Game day tips: Sometimes the highways are crowded or under construction. Exit FAST Gratiot at Madison to reach Comerica Park. Exit FAST Woodward Ave at Little Caesars Arena or Grand Circus Park. For more info on FAST buses, check out this blog.

FAST Woodward stops at Grand Circus Park and is close to Comerica Park.

DDOT has been around since 1922 & has been providing bus service since 1925. In 2018, DDOT rebranded their busiest routes calling them ConnectTen. These routes reach all the popular neighborhoods like New Center, Midtown, Eastern Market, West Village, East Jefferson, Corktown, Mexicantown, Woodbridge, Avenue of Fashion, Redford and Grandmont Rosedale. If you live along these routes or you are parked along one of these routes, you can catch a DDOT bus to downtown. Most routes end downtown or at the Rosa Parks Transit Center where you can catch the People Mover or walk. ConnectTen routes are 24-hr routes.

Game day tips: Park along Cass Ave & ride the #16 Dexter bus to the Columbia stop by Bucharest. Other bars and restaurants to pre-game at can be found along most ConnectTen routes. Check out this brewery guide for more ideas.

DDOT ConnectTen routes are 24-hr routes.

Already downtown? You can park along the People Mover route and take it to Grand Circus Park. It has been serving downtown since 1987. The monorail runs clockwise. Hours are M-Th (6:30am-12am), F (6:30am-2am), Sat (9am-2am), Sun (12pm-12am).

Game day tip: Be sure to download the People Mover’s new APP.

People Mover Map

Detroit’s streetcar started operating in 2017 and serves Woodward Ave between New Center & downtown Detroit. There are many places to park along the route and many places to visit. Hours are: M-TH (6am-12am), F (6am-2am), Sat (8am-2am), Sun (8am-11pm).

Game day tip: QLine is known to get stuck in heavy traffic. You may want to try a bus instead.

Qline system map

MoGo Detroit is a docking bicycle share system. For $1 you can unlock a bike & pay $0.25 a minute to ride. For $18 you can get a 2-hour pass that can be used all at once or over several trips.

Game day tip: The closest MoGo station is in Grand Circus Park along Woodward.

Image of MoGo System map

Avid transit blogger from Metro Detroit.