The METRO/Greater Portland Transit District will hold two public meetings this month to discuss plans for a proposed new bus service between Portland, Yarmouth and Freeport.

Discussions will include the final route and schedules, bus stop locations and vehicle amenities.

The meetings will be held on Nov. 17 in Portland and Nov. 19 in Freeport.

The bus agency has applied for a federal grant that would provide $675,000 for the first three years of the project, and other federal funds are available to purchase the three buses for the route.

The town councils in Freeport and Yarmouth have agreed to support the pilot program, which would cost each town an average of $30,000 annually for the first three years.

The bus would stop at two locations in each town, and also stop in downtown Portland and at the Portland Transportation Center, where there are connections to the inter-city bus and passenger train service. Some buses may also stop on Route 1 in Falmouth, which is already served by a METRO bus.

None of the buses will stop in Cumberland because the Town Council there voted not to join the project.

The meeting in Portland on Nov. 17 will be held at 5:30 p.m. in Rines Auditorium at the Portland Public Library.

The Freeport meeting on Nov. 19 will be held at 6 p.m. at the Freeport Community Center, 53 Depot St.

METRO officials say they are optimistic about winning funding for the project and are holding planning meetings now so the agency can buy buses quickly after the grant award is announced. The service would start next summer.