State Ave. CONNEX Gets Big Buses Jan 5
Posted by Transit Action Network on December 23, 2013
TAN advocated for this upgrade and we are extremely happy that the change is being made.
We recently communicated with Mayor Holland and reminded him of the commitment he made last February during our candidate forum to alleviate the overcrowded conditions on this route when it changed to a Connex service . UGT was expecting about 1400-1600 riders daily when the Connex route started, but instead they have seen days with 2200-2300 riders.
Even though the mayor, commissioners and the city administrator knew how overcrowded this route was, they had to find a way to pay the additional $230,000 yearly for the larger buses. UGT and KCATA worked with everyone to find a financial solution. Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) funds will provide 80% the money next year with Unified Government providing the local matching funds. Read KCATA’s news release
Now riders can enjoy more room on the buses as well as the improved facilities provided by the TIGER grant.
Transit Trends in UG
Recently Unified Government has been improving transit when there is a demonstrated need, such as the planned Rosedale/Argentine line. TAN hopes this favorable attitude toward transit continues.
In 2012 Mayor (then Commissioner) Holland worked with TAN when we successfully advocated for large buses on Saturdays for this same route.
Last February we questioned the mayoral candidates about this very issue and received a campaign commitment from then candidate Holland.
Mayor Holland answered our forum question regarding the already overcrowded Route #101 with a resounding commitment to improve the service later in the year.
Question: Route 101 will change to the Connex service later this year. Will you make sure that the upgrade in service level is enough to alleviate the current overcrowded conditions, without negatively impacting other services?
Mark Holland – Absolutely. It looks like this improvement will make a huge difference.
See all of his answers in our the February forum. http://wp.me/pV5fE-1rK
Unified Government does not have any revenue dedicated to transit like Kansas City, MO does, but prefers to allocate funds as needed. Their local transit funds come out of the General Revenue account, so it is good to see the County providing additional funds for transit when a definite need arises.
TAN particularly appreciates the commitment to better transit from Mayor Holland, Commissioner Murguia and the Assistant County Administrator, Gordon Criswell (who is in charge of transit). Commissioner Murguia is now a member of MARC’s Total Transportation Policy Committee, which means we will see her on a regular basis to discuss transit issues in Wyandotte County.
Riders, enjoy the large buses!