D.S.R. Route #69
NORTHLAWN
However, beginning on March 11, 1929, the Wyoming route was extended to Michigan Avenue, and
the
Northlawn route would now become the eastern terminus of the Schoolcraft line.  The route
would remain part of the
Schoolcraft bus line until June, 1948—when the Schoolcraft route was
rerouted via Ewald Circle, where it basically followed the route of the former
Oakman streetcar line to
the
DSR's Highland Park Terminal.  Service along Northlawn was continued by extending the
'short–lived'
Fullerton Shuttle route eastward from Grand River and Fullerton, via Fullerton and
Wyoming to Intervale, where it then follow-ed the former
Schoolcraft route to Oakman and Grand
River.

However, effective Sunday, April 3, 1949, the
Fullerton Shuttle bus route was discontinued. On that
same day service began on the new
Northlawn bus line.  Originally, the southern portion of the
Northlawn line covered the same route pictured above, but instead of returning at Intervale, the
route continued nearly 1½–mile northward along Wyoming to Puritan, where it continued west along
Puritan to Southfield Road, then south along Southfield to Fenkell—the current route now followed by
the
DDOT #39 Puritan line. (During those days, the bus service along the Puritan route east of
Wyoming was provided by the former
Puritan-Fenkell line, which continued via Wyoming and Fenkell
to Telegraph.)

The original headways on the
Northlawn route averaged 12 minutes during the peak hours and 30
minutes during the base, with five to six of the small 27-passenger
Ford coaches required for peak
hour operation and two during the base. But effective on June 15, 1951, the
Puritan-Fenkell bus line
was extended further west along Puritan, to coincide with the launching of the new
Fenkell bus route.
As a result, the
Northlawn route was cut back to Wyoming and Intervale, resulting in the shortened,
3.32-mile round trip shuttle route pictured above.

Headways on the shorter
Northlawn route averaged 15 minutes during the peak and 30 minutes
during the base. But by 1953, only one bus serviced the line with 20-minute headways throughout the
day. Sunday service was discontinued on May 1, 1955, with Monday thru Saturday service continuing
through the route's remaining years of operation.

Beginning on June 7, 1971, service on the
Northlawn line was suspended due to construction on the
new
Jeffries (I-96) Freeway—which now posed additional problems by preventing the residential
streets of Northlawn and Cloverlawn access across the freeway, between Fullerton and Davison. This
now cut the already short route in half.  Consequently,
DSR management announced that service on
the route would not return. But after angry protests from area residents, service was restored on
September 25, 1972, with the line rerouted ½–mile to the east between Fullerton and Davison, along
Ewald Circle.

Shortly thereafter, the
DSR management announced that the #69 Northlawn line would be combined
(via Wyoming and Lyndon) with the
#63 Meyers line, ½-mile to the west. Effective on June 15, 1973,  
the same day the
Michigan and Gratiot and Broadstreet and W. Chicago routes were combined,  
the
Northlawn bus line was replaced by the newly merged route #63 Meyers-Northlawn.


Information for the above article compiled from data supplied by various Jack E. Schramm Motor Coach Age magazine articles on DSR bus
routes from 1922 thru 1974, including
"Detroit's DSR, Part 1" (January–February 1991 edition), "Detroit's DSR, Part 2" (March–April 1992
edition), and
"Detroit's DSR, Part 3" (May–June 1993 edition). Additional info obtained from 1954 DSR Schedule Analysis and Headway
Reports courtesy of Tom Breeding, and 1951, 1957-58, 1963 and 1968 thru 1972 DSR Service Maps already in the author's possession. The 1969
Northlawn transfer copy courtesy of the Stan Sycko collection.
© 2008
The former route #69 Northlawn was a short 1.8-mile long
light service shuttle route that primarily operated along a
few residential streets on the west-side of Detroit.  The
route provided service to the commercial retail area
located at Oakman Blvd. and Grand River.  Such major
retail establishments as Sears, Roebuck and Co.,
Federal's Department Store, S S Kresge, Robert Hall,
United Shirt, Meyer Jewelers, and Cunningham Drugs
were all located within one block of that intersection.


During the early years, the route which would later become the
Northlawn bus line covered a much larger area.  During the
start–up years of the
DSR's Motor Coach Division, almost
the entire portion of the
Northlawn bus route pictured here
(see  route map)  formed the southern terminus for the original  
Wyoming feeder bus route—–which began operations back in
late November of 1925. The
Wyoming route operated from
Fenkell and Wyoming via Wyoming, Schoolcraft and Cloverlawn
(return Northlawn) to Oakman and Grand River.  The
Wyoming
line was later extended to Eight Mile Road in 1927.