CLEVELAND — If you have taken a bus trip to a casino, as part a tour group, or on a long field trip in Northeast Ohio, chances are at some point you've traveled with Lakefront Lines, a Cleveland-based company.
Earlier this month, Lakefront Lines' parent company, Coach USA, announced that it is ceasing Lakefront's operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a letter submitted to the Ohio Department of Job and Famly Services dated July 15, Coach USA says it plans to close its operations 'on or about September 16' of this year. More than 320 employees will permanently laid off.
Lakefront Lines had grown to be the largest motorcoach company in the state of Ohio. In addition to being headquartered in Cleveland, the company has locations in Toledo, Columbus, and Cincinnati.
According to Mark Dominick, Operations Manager for Coach USA, employee furloughs began on or about March 16, 2020 and were expected to he temporary. "As a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the company was forced to rapidly cease and/or substantially reduce its operations," Dominick wrote to the state.
In a statement to 3News, Sean Hughes, Coach USA's Director of Corporate Affairs, said the following about the decision: “Due to the current impact of Covid19 and future uncertainty, Coach USA has made the difficult decision to permanently cease operations of Lakefront Lines. Coach USA thanks our employees at Lakefront Lines for their years of committed service and wish them good fortune in their future endeavors.”
Schools will be heavily affected by this news. Lakefront Lines has provided buses not only for field trips, but also to drive Cleveland students to and from school.
You can read Coach USA's entire letter to the state below: