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For Immediate Release: Wednesday, December 6, 2023

The Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) is returning “Flash Lights” buses for the winter holiday season. Montgomery County residents and visitors can take in the roaming light display along Colesville Road/US 29 as five of the Flash Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) buses have been adorned with festive holiday lights. The buses will remain decorated throughout December.

Riders are encouraged to post pictures of the Flash Lights buses on their X, Facebook, Threads and Instagram accounts and tag @MCDOTNow for a chance to win a $25 gift card. One winner will be randomly selected from all participants in a weekly drawing, beginning Monday, Dec. 4 through Friday, Jan. 5. Full details for the contest can be found on

“The decorated Flash buses have become a tradition in our County and are a good way for residents and visitors to experience the holiday season,” said County Executive Marc Elrich. “The Flash US 29 bus route provides express service to some of our County’s most popular destinations.  We hope the lights will encourage people to shop locally, enjoy our County’s vibrant performing arts scene at one of our music venues or theaters, or take a spin around the outdoor ice-skating rink in downtown Silver Spring.”

The decorated Flash buses are running along Colesville Rd/Columbia Pike (US 29) between the Silver Spring Transit Center, Briggs Chaney and Burtonsville, with stops along the way. The County-operated bus line began in 2020 and offers fast, convenient service running every seven to 15 minutes on weekdays and every 30 minutes on weekends.

Fares on Ride On for most riders is only $1 per ride. Seniors  (age 65 and older), persons with disabilities and youth under 19  ride free with specialized SmarTrip cards. The US 29 Flash buses are the first of a series of BRT corridors planned for the County to provide a premiere bus service, often with dedicated lanes and signal priority.

The Flash Lights holiday buses made their 2023 debut on Nov. 18 at the Silver Spring Thanksgiving parade where a Flash bus decorated in a “Let It Snow” theme made its way down the parade route. During the parade, a snow machine was used to create a winter wonderland for onlookers. The decorated buses began circulating on the US 29 route in late November.

“The Flash BRT has consistently been one of our most popular bus services since its debut in 2020,” said MCDOT Director Chris Conklin. “It consistently places within the top four for the highest ridership of our bus routes. The express service to popular destinations, combined with family-friendly features such as level boarding for wheelchairs and strollers, has made riding the Flash an appealing option for anyone in need of convenient and reliable transportation along US 29. We started the Flash Lights campaign in 2021 to create a fun and memorable experience for the community. This is the third year we have done this, and we know our riders look forward to catching a Flash Lights bus during the holiday season.”

Visit to learn more about Flash BRT and how to ride the bus. To encourage riders to try out the Flash around the holidays MCDOT has created a Holiday Get Around Guide highlighting the many shopping centers and attractions accessible by the Flash US 29 route.

For more information on MCDOT programs and services visit, follow @MCDOTNow on XFacebook and Instagram and subscribe to MCDOT’s “Go Montgomery!” newsletter. 


Release ID: 23-538
Media Contact: Emily DeTitta 240-372-2232
Categories: Transportation