BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — The city of Birmingham and the Birmingham Jefferson Transit Authority have rolled out the Birmingham Xpress, the city’s new transit system.

The Birmingham Xpress takes riders to 32 neighborhoods across Birmingham and the surrounding areas, bringing them to their destinations in 15 minutes during peak periods and every 30 minutes during non-peak periods.

This transit has its own bus lane and an accessible platform at each bus stop, allowing riders easy access to enter and exit.

The next 30 days are free for riders. After that, bus fare is $1.50.

Tickets can be purchased at one of Birmingham bus stations or one of the ticket vending machines at one of Birmingham Xpress bus terminals. BJCTA executive director Charlotte Shaw said this allows faster access onboard the bus.

“You can actually board from the back of the bus, and then you come up and validate that you have purchased a ticket, or you can just use your credit card when you come on board and tap,” Shaw said. “Its mobile advances, so you no longer have a fair box.”

Birmingham city councilor Darrel O’Quinn said the buses were initially supposed to come out ahead of the World Games in July, but supply chain issues and FDA guidelines delayed the rollout.

O’Quinn said the new transportation option will give people better access to employment, education, and healthcare in Birmingham.

“We’re the first city in Alabama to get it and one of the first cities in the Southeast to have a bus rapid transit line,” he said. “I don’t think Atlanta or Nashville has one, so it’s a big deal.”

O’Quinn said the city is exploring the possibilities of more routes, as well as more drivers.

Service hours for the Birmingham Xpress are 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturdays.