This 1958 route-map shows the 4.6-mile long route of the DSR's Davison Shuttle bus line. The route remained unchanged from 1954
until the service was discontinued in 1966.
The Davison Shuttle's first existence as a bus route began on November 17, 1938, after the DSR decided to
discontinue its Oakman East streetcar line (an east-side extension of the Oakman car line), that ran from the DSR
Woodward Carhouse in Highland Park, and operated via Woodward, Victor, Oakland, Davison, Mt. Elliott, and Nevada
streets to Van Dyke. The far east-end portion of the Oakman East line (east of Jos. Campau) was replaced by an
extension of the Baker streetcar line. (The former Baker streetcar route was equivalent to combining the west-side
portion of the present-day #49 Vernor and east-side #10 Chene bus routes.) That portion of the Oakman East
streetcar line west of Jos. Campau was then serviced by the new Davidson Shuttle bus line.
The original Davison Shuttle operated from the DSR Highland Park Terminal's Woodward Loop and traveled via
Woodward, Victor, Oakland, and Davison to Jos. Campau. However, this shuttle operation was somewhat short-lived
after the DSR decided to instead assign the entire service to the Baker route, and the shuttle was discontinued on July
24, 1939. That portion along Davison Street west of Jos. Campau would become the "Highland Park Branch" of the
Baker streetcar line.
However, the shuttle bus would soon be resurrected on March 22, 1942, when the Highland Park Branch of the Baker
car line was discontinued to allow for the construction of the new Davison Expressway in Highland Park. The
Highland Park branch was replaced by a Davison Shuttle Rail Bus. ("Rail buses" were buses that traveled streetcar
routes but charged the 6-cent car fare instead of the 10-cent bus fare — However, rail buses became regular bus
routes on Jan. 1, 1946, when streetcar fares were raised to the 10-cent bus fare).
The Davison Shuttle route was later extended along E. Davison, Mt. Elliott, and Nevada to Van Dyke after all Baker
streetcar operation along Davison was discontinued on Feb. 14, 1949. Beginning on April 1, 1954, the line was
rerouted, leaving from the Woodward Loop via Manchester, John R. and Davison (eastbound), and returning via
Oakland and Manchester (westbound).
A September, 1950, DSR route analysis summary shows that the Davison Shuttle operated 24-hour service, with
headways averaging 4-6 minutes. Service was assigned out of the Woodward Terminal in Highland Park, with 10-14
small-size coaches used during peak-hours and 4 during the base. Two coaches were used for late-night "owl"
However, when the DSR began to cut service during the 1960s, the Davison line became one of the casualties. The
Davison Shuttle was discontinued when the Chene bus line was extended to Van Dyke, via Davison, Mt. Elliott and
Nevada, effective on July 7, 1966.
Information for the above article compiled from data information supplied by Jack E. Schramm, courtesy of "DSR BUS ROUTES, 1922-
1932" ("Detroit's DSR, Part 1" -- January-February 1991 edition of Motor Coach Age magazine),"DSR BUS ROUTES, 1932-1945"
("Detroit's DSR, Part 2" -- March-April 1992 edition of MCA magazine), and "DSR BUS ROUTES, 1945-1974" ("Detroit's DSR, Part 3" --
May-June 1993 edition of MCA magazine). Additional info from 1950 DSR Schedule Analysis and Headway Reports courtesy of Tom
Breeding, and 1957-58 and 1963 DSR Service Maps in the author's possession. The Davison Shuttle route-map and transfer copy
courtesy of the Stan Sycko collection.
© 2007 – www.DetroitTransitHistory.info (PV 10-01-07)
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