Ferris State University contracts with The Rapid of Grand Rapids to provide shuttle bus service from Grand Rapids to Big Rapids. The Rapid has assigned route number 100 entitled "Ferris State Express" for this route. The shuttle bus originates in downtown Grand Rapids at The Rapid's central station located at 250 Grandville Ave. SW. The route to and from Ferris' main campus in Big Rapids includes stops at the Cedar Springs Meijer (3700 17 Mile Road). The Cedar Springs stop is in the parking lot directly south of the Meijer gas station. The Big Rapids stops are at Bond Circle near the Michigan College of Optometry and just south of the intersection of Cedar and Michigan streets on the west side of the Science Building. The shuttle bus time schedule is driven by the departure times from the Rapids Central Station in Grand Rapids and the Science Building in Big Rapids. Refer to the link below in the Schedule section for the detailed schedule.
Although the shuttle bus service is available to anyone, it is primarily intended for current and prospective students who permanently reside in Kent County and are already enrolled or intend to enroll at Ferris’ Big Rapids campus.
Students required to live on campus for the fall and spring semesters who are interested in enrolling in the bus ridership program will be released from their housing obligation if they meet the eligibility requirement (Kent County permanent address) and their student accounts show they have purchased a shuttle bus card each semester.
The general hours of operation are 6:20 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday during the fall and spring semesters when classes are scheduled. There is no shuttle service on the weekends or during student holidays or breaks when there are no classes.
Scheduled arrivals to the main campus in Big Rapids are 7:45 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 2:20 p.m. and 6:10 p.m. The drop-off locations are the Northwest entrance of the Science Building and at Bond Circle on West campus. The shuttle bus will leave campus for Grand Rapids 5 minutes after each arrival time. Actual times can vary due to weather, traffic conditions or other circumstances. All trips to and from the main campus include a stop at the Cedar Springs Meijer (parking lot south of the gas station) to pick up or drop off passengers. Exit 104 (Cedar Springs) is the only scheduled stop along the route. Bus stop signs will be posted. Click here to view the complete schedule.
If you miss the bus, it is your responsibility to make arrangements for alternative transportation or wait for the next scheduled bus if the missed bus was not the last for the day. It also is your responsibility to address missed classes or activities with faculty.
Riders can purchase a shuttle bus card (similar to a Bulldog card) for unlimited use for $700 per semester, which must be paid in full at the time of purchase or charged to their student accounts at the time of purchase. Ferris faculty and staff can use payroll deduction as a form of payment. Cards are non-refundable, non-transferable and must be presented upon request. Fraudulent use of cards will result in disciplinary action. There is a $25 replacement cost for lost or stolen cards.
Riders who do not wish to purchase a shuttle bus card can pay a one-way trip fee of $8 in cash each time they ride. Payment is given to the bus driver at the time of boarding.
Financial Aid award packages do include commuter cost for students who do not live on campus. Click here for FAQs related to financial aid for shuttle bus service.
Shuttle bus cards can be purchased from Ferris’ Student Financial Services office in the Timme Center for Student Services (CSS 101). Hours of operation are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday. The ID’s require a photo image which is taken in CSS, so the cards must be purchased and picked up by customers. New cards must be purchased each semester. For more information, call (231) 591-3720.
Click on The Rapid’s Commute Cost Calculator to determine how much you spend annually driving from Grand Rapids to Ferris’ Big Rapids campus to attend classes or work.
The 40-foot commuter bus has a seating capacity of 40 passengers and standing room for approximately 20 passengers. There is no restroom on board. There is a bike rack with capacity for two bikes. The bus can accommodate two wheelchair riding passengers and potentially a third if the passenger can store the chair and ride in a bus seat. Strollers are allowed, but must be folded up. Passengers are required to follow The Rapid’s rules for riding.
Riders also are encouraged to sign up for text alerts for special announcements and can do so through MyFSU.
Ferris State University is committed to providing the best possible shuttle bus service at a reasonable cost. Since this is a pilot program, your feedback is very important. Please share service concerns or suggestions for improvements by calling Paul Willard (231) 591-3725 or e-mailing FerrisShuttle@ferris.edu.
Passengers who leave something behind on the bus should complete The Rapid “Lost and Found” form on The Rapid website.