With funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) stimulus grant at 100 percent federal share ($455,000), campusLink launched the service of three new ElDorado National Passport buses in Indiana.
campusLink provides free shuttle service to students, faculty and staff in and around the campuses of Ivy Tech Community College - Northeast and Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW). It is also open to the public.
The campus shuttle project is funded as a demonstration as one of two elements of a Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) grant for the first three years of operation — 80 percent federal and 20 percent local funding shared by the two schools.
campusLink, which began in August, utilizes three light transit vehicles that provide 20 minute service frequency throughout the student residential and commercial areas adjacent to both campuses.
Since the beginning of service in August, total ridership to date is 13,047 one-way passenger trips — approximately 200 trips per day on average.
In addition to the free campusLink shuttle, the CMAQ grant allows Citilink, a service of Fort Wayne Public Transportation Corp., to sell discounted bus passes to encourage ridership on the 12 regular Citilink routes. To date, 967 monthly Citilink bus passes at an 80 percent discount have been sold to IPFW and Ivy Tech students, faculty and staff. Citilink is able to bill the CMAQ grant to help subsidize the pass discount.
Manufactured in California but sold by Midwest Transit in Indianapolis, the new buses run cleaner and are more energy efficient than the older buses that were being used temporarily.