KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — It has been a little over a week since Knoxville's Greyhound bus stop was moved from downtown to outside of a Cherry Street gas station.
Passengers have had to wait outside the Marathon in East Knoxville, an industrialized area. The gas station has no indoor waiting area, closes at 10 p.m. and after it closes, there is no restroom available.
Gwen Mckenzie, District 6 councilwoman, said this is not an ideal area for people to wait for a bus.
"It's not very well lit; they don't have facilities that they can use. It's not the safest place for them, and they've not made any better accommodations. So I'm very upset about it, very disturbed," she said.
City Councilwoman Lauren Rider from the Fourth District also shared her thoughts with WBIR.
"As I understand, the city and KAT reached out to Greyhound reps. Interstate transportation is needed; family members and I have used Greyhound before. I am hopeful they will quickly work out a more protective or indoor location and maintain consistent transfer buses. People need reliable and safe transit. I think out-of-country ownership has increased the challenges."
Amelia Parker is a member at large and also released a statement to WBIR.
"It is disappointing that discussions between the city and Greyhound stalled a few years ago regarding the use of the Knoxville station. Greyhound has chosen a location that violates our zoning code and endangers the safety of their passengers, as the bus company is leaving passengers to wait overnight at times at a closed gas station for their connecting bus."
A few years ago, city leaders said Greyhound talked to them about the possibility of sharing the Knoxville Station Transit Center, the hub for Knoxville Area Transit buses.
But they said the conversation did not go very far.
Charles Thomas, District 5 councilman, said he is willing to do whatever it takes to correct the situation.
McKenzie said they are talking about it again.
"I know that the city, the mayor, and KAT representatives are trying to work with them on some recommendations on better accommodations for their customers," she said.
Leaders say they're talking to KAT and Greyhound about setting up a safe location for pick-ups and drop-offs. Those same leaders said Greyhound has been receptive, and they're hoping to agree on a new location soon.