University

Stimulus funds help U. of Ark. expand service

Posted on September 13, 2010

[IMAGE]NewOrions-2.jpg[/IMAGE]FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — University of Arkansas' Razorback Transit is offering improved and expanded bus service for the 2010-11 school year. Last year Razorback Transit applied for and received federal grants to buy five new 40-foot, low-floor transit buses, which are now in service on campus.

These buses replaced older, smaller and less efficient buses. The three most recently purchased buses are Orion VIIs, purchased with stimulus funds and put into service in August, says Razorback Transit Manager Michael Seither.

Razorback Transit now has nine full-size, low-floor buses in operation, bringing the total to 16 buses in daily use. Bus ridership numbers for fiscal year 2010 reached a new high of 1,564,762 passenger boardings, and those numbers are expected to increase again this year. Razorback Transit service is fare free to the university community as well as to members of the general public because it is funded in part by federal grants.

Razorback Transit is also increasing its service to provide coverage to Fair Park Apartments on both Gray and Blue Reduced Routes. Service hours are also increasing on the Maple Hill Express to coordinate with the opening of the university's new Garland Center, which contains the university bookstore, retail space and more than 1,500 parking spaces.

Razorback Transit operates a paratransit service for eligible passengers with mobility impairments that prevent them from using fixed route bus services. The paratransit fleet has been upgraded with a new vehicle each year for the past four years, replacing two-thirds of the fleet with new equipment. Paratransit service transported 10,939 passengers in FY 2010.

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