Bus

2013 APTA Award Profile: Public support fuels The Rapid's growth

Posted on October 1, 2013

With a history of successful public support, the Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Interurban Transit Partnership’s (The Rapid) ridership grew from 4.5 million to 11.9 million from 2000 to 2012, which is just one reason why it has been named APTA’s “Outstanding Public Transit System,” carrying more than four million but less than 20 million.

One major contributor for The Rapid’s ridership growth has been expansion as a result of four successful referendums to raise the property millage that is used to partially fund its operations since 2000.

“Back in 2000 before we passed the first millage, we had no evening service at all, very little Saturday service and no Sunday service,” explains Jennifer Kalczuk, spokesperson for The Rapid. “A big part of what we have been doing with each millage is building a system that is convenient and gets people to where they want to go, when they want to get there.”

With that in mind, The Rapid is currently focusing on work-related trips by adding more frequent service during commuter hours and more routes running into the evening to provide access to second- and third-shift jobs, as well as steadily increasing weekend service.

The most recent millage raise in 2011 will be used to fund the first phase of the Transit Master Plan approved by The Rapid’s board in 2010, which will aim to reduce the weekday wait for most buses to 15 minutes as well as add new crosstown routes to avoid downtown transfers, enable all routes to run on Sunday and create the first bus rapid transit (BRT) line in the state, which will be known as the Silver Line.

The 9.6-mile BRT system, set to open in August 2014, will serve major employers, including St. Mary’s Medical campus, the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine and the Cook-DeVos School of Nursing, which together employ about 29,000 area residents.

In October 2012, the Federal Transit Administration pledged $19 million through its Capital Investment (Small Starts) Program and $13 million through its Bus and Bus Facilities grant program to help fund the project.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Registration extended for relationship-building event, TBX 2019

Senior-level transit and paratransit employees who qualify will receive a full grant to attend that includes travel and education.

California's SamTrans to study express bus service feasibility

Service aims to improve mobility options and ease freeway congestion in San Mateo County and launch as a pilot in mid-2019.

New Flyer to provide 10 60-foot buses for ABQ Ride

The city issued a recommendation of award for 60-foot, articulated, five-door clean diesel buses to New Flyer under a 2016 solicitation.

ARBOC's Spirit of Equess passes Altoona Testing

Currently available in diesel or compressed natural gas propulsions, the vehicle offers many of the capabilities of a heavy-duty bus, but retains all the benefits of a mid-level vehicle.

First Transit awarded California operations, maintenance contract

Will provide the City of Visalia with day-to-day operations and oversight for 87 vehicles, employing 130. 

See More News

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment

TruckingInfo.com

THE COMMERCIAL TRUCK INDUSTRY’S MOST IN-DEPTH INFORMATION SOURCE

Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

LCT Magazine

Global Resource For Limousine and Bus Transportation