Source: Shannon Hoffman, collegepark.patch.com
Wed, 17th Aug, 2011
The Varsity apartment complex, one of College Park’s newest additions, will soon be home to ChiDogO’s, Royal Farms, Bobby’s Burger Palace, and Looney’s Pub, an Irish-themed sports bar and restaurant with a maximum capacity of almost 500.
But The Varsity has only designated about 100 spaces for retail parking. What’s a customer to do?
Due to open next month, Looney’s Pub will operate a shuttle service to carry patrons to and from the restaurant, said Steve Litrenta, co-owner of the restaurant.
Right now, Litrenta has little in the way of specifics for day-to-day shuttle operations. The exact route is still being ironed out, and the owners of the pub plan on meeting with students and College Park residents to figure out where the stops should be.
The shuttle, expected to run on weekends, will be operational about two weeks after Looney’s mid-September opening.
“We might even operate a second shuttle if there is enough need for it,” Litrenta said.
Reaction to the idea for a shuttle service has generally been positive among the College Park community.
“If a bus came by [where I live], I’d probably use it a lot,” said University of Maryland student Chris Galiatsatos, 21, a resident of The Courtyards.
“I would say that’s a good idea. You can’t stop kids from drinking, but you can make it safer for them to get to and from campus while doing so,” student Samantha Roppelt, 21, said.
Looney’s Pub also operates shuttles at their other three locations in the Baltimore area, and Litrenta has described the service as “very successful.”
City Councilman Patrick Wojahn expressed concerns about the parking situation for Looney’s in an August 9 council meeting, and recently learned of the plans for the shuttle.
Parking played a role in the decision to bring the shuttle service to College Park, Litrenta said, but it wasn’t the primary factor in reaching the decision.
“We keep hearing about parking, transportation and safety, but we just want to make sure everyone’s safe, that’s the key,” he said.
Wojahn said the idea for the shuttle was “great,” but hopes the service caters to the entire College Park community, not just students.
Looney’s Pub, opening in the 8100 block of Baltimore Avenue, will feature a six-page food menu, an outdoor patio, more than 60 hi-definition televisions and a stage for live performances.