Salem is located in northwestern Oregon, and the city is the capital of the entire state, as well as being the county seat of Marion County. Salem is one of the older cities on the west coast, being founded in 1842 and fully fifteen years later. The name Salem is actually an interpretation of a Native American word meaning “meeting or resting place”. As of 2010, Salem has a population of 154,637 people, making it Oregon’s third largest city. When looking at Salem’s greater metropolitan area, that number jumps to 396,103.
The buses in the city of Salem are run by the Salem-Keizer Transit, which is an independent government agency, as well as by the Chemeketa Area Regional Transportation System, otherwise known as CARTS. Greyhound also provides some limited service in the city. Amtrak serves the city’s rail needs, and travels to cities such as Los Angeles, Eugene, and Vancouver. Major highways running through or near Salem include Interstate 5, Oregon Route 99, 22, 221, 51, and 213.