Getting Around and Out of Town with Public Transportation

Rochester, Rochester Hills and Oakland Township lack traditional public transportation; buses and trains do not make stops in our area. However, there are still a few options for those without a car, going green, and just trying to save on the high cost of gasoline.

The OPC Minibus

The Older Persons’ Commission (OPC) on Letica Drive in Rochester offers transportation by minibus. According to their web site, “We serve all people 60 and older and those under 60 who are disabled. Let the OPC minibus take you anywhere in Rochester, Rochester Hills, Oakland Township, Oakland University, or the Troy Beaumont Medical Complex. You may use the Minibus for appointments, shopping, or to visit friends.”

A donation of $3.00 one-way ($6.00 roundtrip) is expected. However, the OPC asks that riders to donate what they can afford. Riders can schedule pick-up by calling the dispatch hotline at least two days in advance of the date needed. They basically run business hours weekdays with limited hours on the weekend. Riders may have an escort travel with them if needed for an additional donation. If you are disabled and under 60, a doctor’s written statement must be provided. All the details can be found on the OPC’s web site under the tab “Transportation.”
Dispatch and Reservations 248-652-4780
Monday – Friday: 9:00 am – 2:30 pm
Hours of Transportation
Monday – Friday: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Saturday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sunday: 8:00 am – 1:00 pm (church services only)


The Bear Bus

The Oakland University’s web site tells us that “The Bear Bus is a free shuttle service offered to all Oakland University students, faculty and staff who possess an OU ID. Now, those without transportation will have safe, reliable access to the community that surrounds the OU campus. Weekend routes include stops for grocery shopping, new clothes, a visit to downtown Rochester and more, errands, and entertainment. Weekday routes provide transportation around campus.”

Unfortunately, The Bear Bus is off for the summer and will return to normal operations when the fall semester starts. Hours and schedule are limited but does offer students a way around town without having to rely on a car. Pick-up and drop-off for on campus stops run every 20 minutes, while off campus runs about every 30 minutes.




Voters of Rochester, Rochester Hills and Oakland Township opted out the mileage to fund the SMART buses into their communities in the mid 1990s. The closest SMART bus stop is at Oakland University, part of route 756 for Auburn Hills and Pontiac. This route runs 13 times per day, makes just a few stops, and ends at the Phoenix Center where you can connect with another SMART Bus route. Regular fares are only a couple of dollars while senior, student and youth fares can be as low as fifty cents. Both Greyhound and Amtrak have a station in Pontiac and from there you may start a journey that takes you to Chicago or across the country.

Maps and Schedules
Greyhound Bus
Amtrak Train
By Michael Dwyer
About Michael Dwyer

Michael Dwyer is a freelance content provider. Michael writes about happenings in the Rochester area, travels across Michigan and destinations around the world. Contact him at

Speak Your Mind