ROUTES 800-804


Bus Predecessor: Aurora-Elgin Bus Line

Interurban History

Interurban Railway Map

Several electric railways were eventually consolidated into the Aurora Elgin & Fox River Electric Co., providing local streetcar service within its two namesake cities, and interurban service along the Fox River between those two cities. All electric railway service was replaced by buses by 1935, operated by subsidiary Fox Valley Bus Lines. In 1936 all bus operations were taken over by the newly formed National City Lines.

The original National City Lines subsidiary was Aurora-Elgin City Lines. Which in 1940 was divided into three subsidiaries, Aurora City Lines, Elgin City Lines, and Aurora-Elgin Bus Line. In 1966, those subsidiaries were sold by National City Lines to Vernon Westover, a regional manager of National City Lines.

In 1968, the interurban bus route was sold to Joliet-Aurora Transit Lines. In 1971, route was assumed by Elgin Department of Transportation, later the Pace River Division, subsidized by communities along the route. And in 1991, route was split at Geneva, with south segment operated by Pace Fox Valley Division, formerly Aurora Transit System.

800 - Richmond-Fox Lake-McHenry - introduced 8/4/80 when commuter rail service was discontinued between McHenry and Richmond, discontinued 7/16/82.

801-802 - Elgin-Geneva-Aurora - was a single bus route which had evolved from the main interurban railway route in the Fox Valley. In Elgin, original segment was South State horse car route, electrified in 1891, and interurban route extended to Geneva in 1896. From Aurora, interurban line was completed north to Batavia in 1906, and to Geneva in 1900. Bus service existed over this corridor by the 1920's. Interurban railway replaced with buses in 1935, sold to National City Lines in 1936, and established as subsidiary Aurora-Elgin Bus Line in 1940. Route sold to Joliet-Aurora Transit Lines in 1968, which ceased operations in 1973. At that time, the Elgin Department of Transportation assumed operation, subsidized by communities along the route. Effective 4/8/91, route split into present two routes, and new route #802 operated by Pace Fox Valley Division. Originally, each split route made a large loop through the Geneva-St. Charles area, mainly via North Ave., Kirk Rd., State St., and Randall Rd. Route #801 operated clockwise, while route #802 operated counterclockwise through the loop. Route changes resulted in the end of the loop operation for route #802 effective 10/24/2005, as part of a major restructuring of Aurora Pace routes, and for route #801 effective 12/12/2011. Between South Elgin and St. Charles, route #801 had operated until that time via State Hwy. 25. Route was then revised to serve the growing area along Randall Rd.

803 - Carpentersville - introduced 6/5/78, originally connecting with local Elgin routes 541 or 543 near the K-Mart on Dundee Rd. Route later changed to serve Spring Hill Mall, which opened in 1980. Route also included a rush hour feeder service to Barrington train station, introduced 6/4/79 and discontinued in 1991. Originally operated under contract by Commuter Bus Systems, operations assumed in 1979 by Elgin Department of Transportation, now Pace River Division.

804 - Montgomery - introduced 5/15/78, operating southwest of Aurora to Montgomery, primarily via Lake. Discontinued 2/25/83. Operated by Aurora Transit System.


Joliet-Aurora Transit Lines
Operated between its namesake cities, beginning in 1924 as Joliet Plainfield & Aurora Transportation Co., replacing an interurban railway. Around 1950 became Joliet-Aurora Transit Lines. In 1968 acquired the Aurora-Elgin Bus Line from National City Lines, with the original Joliet-Aurora operation discontinued around 1969. Ceased operations in 1973, with Aurora-Elgin route turned over to Elgin Department of Transportation.

Car Houses/Bus Garages (Aurora)
Car Houses/Bus Garages (Elgin)

Chicago Aurora & Elgin Web Site
Link to an excellent Web site with history, rosters, and other information about the Chicago Aurora & Elgin Railroad, which from 1906 to 1924 was part of the same company operating local streetcars.