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Airport, buses and ride-hail open, monorail closed during shutdown

With much of Nevada coming to a screeching halt Wednesday after Gov. Steve Sisolak recommended the closure of nonessential businesses, most transportation services are still up and running.

Transportation is considered an essential business, and all forms could stay open if they chose to do so. But knowing exactly what is and isn’t in service in the Las Vegas Valley during the shutdown can be confusing.

Here are the transportation modes that are still going amid the near-statewide closure.

McCarran International Airport

Despite the calls flooding McCarran following Sisolak’s announcement Tuesday evening, yes, the skies are open.

Though many airlines, such as Allegiant Air, Delta Air Lines and American Airlines, are cutting back routes, the airport is still open to passenger and cargo operations.

Passengers can expect light crowds as volume has dropped, leading to some airport vendors limiting hours — and more could follow suit.

“Food service locations are adjusting hours based on the changes in demand happening as airlines modify flight schedules,” said airport spokeswoman Christine Crews.

Some vendors began limiting hours last week as travel across the globe slowed amid coronavirus concerns and travel restrictions imposed by President Donald Trump.

McCarran suggests that all travelers check their airline’s website for information on flight status, cancellations and accommodations.

RTC buses

Most of the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada buses will still be in operation during the shutdown.

On Wednesday afternoon, the RTC announced it would “pause service” on its Strip & Downtown Express route. The agency will wait to see if any adjustments need to be made to residential routes.

Riders can expect the possibility of reduced service frequency.

“We will continue to monitor and adjust service, most especially with the recent closures of properties on the Las Vegas Strip,” said RTC spokeswoman Angela Castro. “Given recent closure announcements, the RTC has already and may experience additional reduction in service.”

Taxis and ride hailing

Lyft, Uber and taxis will all be operating during the shutdown.

“Commercial transportation falls under the essential services category and is authorized to continue to provide service to the public,” said Teri Williams, a spokeswoman for the Nevada Department of Business and Industry, which oversees taxis.

Uber and Lyft suspended its shared-ride options Tuesday, looking to curb the possible spread of COVID-19.

“Our goal is to help flatten the curve of community spread in the cities we serve. With that in mind, we are suspending the Uber Pool service in the United States, Canada, London and Paris,” Andrew Macdonald, senior vice president of global rides and platform at Uber, said in a statement. “We remain in close contact with local leaders and will continue to work with them to discourage non-essential travel.”

Monorail

With all resorts along the Las Vegas Strip and the Las Vegas Convention Center closed for the 30-day shutdown, the Las Vegas Monorail is suspending operations during that time.

“The health and safety of our visitors, fellow community members and employees is of the utmost importance during this unprecedented time,” said Ingrid Reisman, vice president and chief marketing officer of the Las Vegas Monorail Company. “We are confident our Las Vegas community will get through this together and we look forward to welcoming our riders once more when the time is right.”

Contact Mick Akers at makers@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2920. Follow @mickakers on Twitter.

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