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Fast lane

Business thriving for curbside bus operators

People wait to board a Megabus on South Canal Street in Chicago, Illinois,August 27, 2012. Megabus is an intercity bus service.
People wait to board a Megabus on South Canal Street in Chicago, Illinois,August 27, 2012. Megabus is an intercity bus service.
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We’re running late this weekday afternoon, and the road is a bit bumpy en route to Madison, Wis.

For Megabus, the still-growing discount intercity bus line, however, the ride has been faster and smoother than anyone would have guessed when it made its U.S. debut 61⁄2 years ago, linking eight Midwestern cities to a Chicago hub for as little as $1 a ticket.

Within two years, Megabus was carrying 2 million passengers annually. That ...

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