Transit Action Network (TAN)

Advocates for Improved and Expanded Transit in the Kansas City Region.

Posts Tagged ‘Johnson County’

Transit Talk Aug 18 – Regional Transit Landscape Is Changing Rapidly – 90.1FM KKFI

Posted by Transit Action Network on August 17, 2015


KKFI 90.1 FMJoin us! Multiple, major changes affecting bus systems and transportation for seniors and people with disabilities will be discussed on Transit Talk as part of RadioActive Magazine.KCATA

Dick Jarrold and Jameson Auten of KCATA discuss the recent changes to regional transit and the impact the changes will make on the community.  Hosted by Janet Rogers of Transit Action Network.

When: Tuesday August 18, 2015 at 6 PM

Where: 90.1FM KKFI Kansas City Community Radio on Radioactive Magazine

MAX brtListen to the podcastjohnson-county-kansas-logo

Changes include Independence returning to KCATA for transit management, Johnson County passing an increase to property tax to expand The JO and Special Edition, one eligibility form and one call center for ADA trips, Link for Care, Main Street Max birthday, Prospect MAX, bus stop inventory and more.

All TAN radio show are available at TAN RADIO

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2014: Transit in the Kansas City Region – What happened?

Posted by Transit Action Network on January 2, 2015


2014 was a busy transit year and it is fun to look back to see some of the main stories and think about the future. Links to some of our related posts are included. If you want to get actively involved in on-going transit issues, contact us at TransActionKC@gmail.com or attend our first meeting of 2015 at Noon on January 9th at the KC Central Library at 10th and Baltimore.

1. The Downtown Streetcar

The Downtown Streetcar construction got underway in May and is about one-third complete at year end. Check out KCStreetcar.com for updates. streetcar

Tom Gerend, previously the Assistant Director of Transportation at MARC, was named the Executive Director for the Streetcar Authority.

Please support the businesses along the route. Lunch Mobs are being organized to help these businesses. Check out @kcstreetcar @tacticalurbankc

2. The Streetcar expansion

Kansas City’s August election for three streetcar expansion routes (Independence Avenue, Linwood and Main Street) would have added an additional 7.6 miles to the Downtown Streetcar for a total of 9.8 miles. The Prospect MAX recommendation was 9.1 miles long. Streetcar Steering Committee Releases Recommendations and Draft Report   The proposal lost 60%-40%.  Video – KC Streetcar Expansion Election Watch and Mayor’s Speech

Next_RailRead the final Next Rail report if you aren’t familiar with the Main Street expansion to the Plaza. If the city comes up with a good funding plan, the expansion to the Plaza may be seen again in a couple of years. Next Rail final expansion recommendation

3. KCMO continues to withhold $2.5 million from KCATAKCATA_2014-2015_KCMO_budget

Although the Kansas City budgeted 95% of the revenue from the ½ cent Transportation Sales Tax to KCATA based on an ordinance TAN initiated in 2010 (it was updated in 2013), the city is withholding $2.5 million from KCATA and causing KCATA’s reserve account to deplete even faster, which is ironic since the city says it is concerned that the KCATA reserve account will deplete itself before 2022; currently estimated to run out in 2018. The city is over $5 million short in its payments to KCAT̄A this year caused by the combination of insufficient sales tax revenue and the additional amount being withheld. KCATA expects the city to short them $5.4 million in 2015.

TAN hopes KCMO pays its bills to the best of its ability by the end of this fiscal year, April 30, 2015. The city administrator is holding the money in case he decides to start out-sourcing part of the bus system to save money. More in 2015.

4. KCATAKCATA

KCATA is working on a comprehensive service analysis to re-design transit downtown.  Attend Public Meetings – Redesigning Downtown KC Transit – July 17 and Downtown Service Improvement Concept 

Map Of Downtown Concept

Map Of Downtown Concept

KCATA continued it re-organization A New Vision for KCATA  and KCATA General Manager Mark E. Huffer Resigns   KCATA is currently looking to fill a new CEO position.

The year ended with KCATA Board of Commissioners re-electing Robbie Makinen for another year as Chair since the reorganization for KCATA isn’t finished and Makinen is doing such a great job pushing the agenda forward. Congratulations! Robbie Makinen Elected KCATA Chair Again 

5. TAN RADIO

Transit Action Network started a semi-regular “Transit Talk” show on 90.1 FM KKFI Kansas City Community Radio on the Radio Active Magazine show. This magazine show has numerous activist groups taking turns to inform the community on various issues. TAN Radio archive of previous shows  Interviews covered conversion to CNG buses, a MAX line for Prospect Ave, the KC Streetcar/MAX election ballot, the MO Amendment 7 election, Special Transportation issues, our inability to pay for most rail projects (like rail to the airport), and a talk with Robbie Makinen about changes at KCATA.

KKFI operates a 100,000-watt transmitter, the most powerful allowed by FCC regulations.

KKFI operates a 100,000-watt transmitter, the most powerful allowed by FCC regulations.

The next show is Jan 6 at 6pm on 90.1 FM KKFI – Your Civil Rights Related To Transit – What are they and how to protect them!

6. Sense or Nonsense –New TAN series

Sense or Nonsense? Streetcars and Increased Property Values Sense or Nonsense? Does rail increase property values? MAKES SENSE

 Sense or Nonsense? Streetcars and Development  Only light rail systems generate development. NOT SO.

 7. New TAXI style services in KCMO

The KCMO city council started the year by changing the taxi ordinance to allow Independent Transportation Network® (ITN), a non-profit charitable organization to operate a vehicle for hire to transport persons who are 65 years of age or older or visually impaired. Action Alert: KCMO – Please Allow A New Transit Service For The Elderly and Visually Impaired 

Uber and Lyft, App driven ride-sharing services, arrived in KC. Uber received a license to operate, but Lfyt is having legal problems.

REGIONAL TRANSIT ISSUES

It is important to remember that we need better transit throughout the whole region.

A. Regional Transit Coordinating Council (RTCC)Transit_Coordinating_Council-2

  1. The RTCC decided to tackle tough issues: RTCC Tackles Big Transit Issues – Funding and Paratransit 

RTCC requested and received more money for transit projects from allocations of federal money (STP and CMAQ) than has ever been granted, including $10 million allocated for Jackson County purchasing the old Rock Island line and two additional railway spurs from Union Pacific.

  1. There are two groups to advise RTCC: Transit Stakeholder Forum (TSF) and the Mobility Advisory Committee (MAC).Transit_Stakeholder_Fourm-2

The TSF is totally open to the public, vague, and doesn’t have members or regular meetings.

We understand that allowing everyone to participate is a new concept at MARC and KCATA, but we think this one needs more work. The forum is very top down and is doesn’t meet regularly like MAC, which meets every other month.

  • Why wasn’t TSF asked for input on the RTCC 2015 workplan? It got to comment on the 2014 plan.
  • When transit projects were developed and prioritized by RTCC for STP and CMAQ funding, the TSF didn’t even get to look at them. (MAC got to prioritize $6 million in funding requests and actually function like an advisory committee-see below)
  • Why isn’t there time for riders to address their issues with the transit agencies?
  • When will TSF function more like a substantive advisory committee?Mobility_AC

MAC, on the other hand, has had only had two meetings, but they are developing a very large membership with voting rights, and they have already recommended a multi-million dollar list of projects to RTCC for allocating 5310 federal funds for paratransit/senior capital and operating money. True, MAC is basically reconvened from the old Special Transportation/JARC Committee at MARC, so they are bringing in the same people as before and expanding.

Mobility Advisory Committee Meets Dec 10

  1. RTCC is leading a regional branding effort that will be rolled out in 2015: RideKC.

B. Seamless Transit Advocacy

Transit Action Network believes the transit system should function in a seamless fashion so that it appears to be run by one agency. We are pleased that the seamless transit concept continues to gain steam. Besides our list of specific seamless transit suggestions Seamless Transit In the Kansas City Region, we advocate for the election of transit friendly public officials and encourage municipalities to return to KCATA for management or management/ operations, which provides the best opportunity for eliminating barriers between the transit systems (The barriers aren’t due to the jurisdictional BORDERS; the problems are caused by operational and infrastructure differences between the transit agencies)

  1. Johnson County

JoCo was in the spotlight at the end of the year with a big county election and a decision to return transit management of The JO and Special Edition to KCATA after 30 years.Johnson County

Online Transit Forum – Candidates for Johnson County Commission 

Big Win for Seamless Transit – The JO Returns to KCATA 

  1. Wyandotte County and Independence

UG logoDuring the year TAN met with Mayor Weir of Independence, Mayor Holland of Unified Government of Wyandotte County and several UG commissioners. Although we advocated for a wide range of transit issues, including better seamless transit, our main thrust was to encourage both entities to bring the rest of their transit service under the management or management/operations of the re-organized KCATA, like Johnson County recently decided. We hear rumblings that this process might start.inde log

  1. Jackson County

Jackson County reached an agreement with Union Pacific for an “option to purchase” the Rock Island right of way plus two spurs for $59.9 million. Jackson County Option to Purchase press release. The agreement has been extended to Sept 2015. Although the County has received $10 million from a federal grant (see RTCC), the County still needs another $50 million for the purchase and that money isn’t easy to come by.

Jackson_County_seal-2This corridor will make a great addition to the Katy Trail, but it showed extremely low ridership for commuter rail in the Jackson County Alternatives Analysis. Ridership between 500 and 1000 trips per day were projected and the line would not qualify for FTA New Starts money at this point. (The Prospect bus has over 6,000 trips daily and it isn’t even a MAX line.)

During 2014 TAN made presentations on financing alternatives for commuter rail and the purchase of the Rock Island property to Jackson County officials. Discussions are continuing.

  1. Unified Government New Transit Route #105 and Bigger Buses to #101

Mayor Holland promised TAN to provide bigger buses to alleviate crowding once the #101 became the new CONNEX service. The improved service went into effect in January 2014. State Ave. CONNEX Gets Big Buses Jan 5

Erin, Carol, Carroll and Rachel conducting the Rosedale Transit Survey

Erin, Carol, Carroll and Rachel conducting the Rosedale Transit Survey

The Rosedale Development Association and the KCK community, along with TAN, secured the new Rosedale Route #105. Event: Opening of 105-Rosedale Route June 30 

  1. C. Environmental Justice Analysis and Tiger Grant

TAN has been in discussions with MARC staff about changes to their Environmental Justice Analysis, which studies how federal transportation money is spent in the region relative to minorities and low-income populations.

The Brookings Institution found that only 18 percent of jobs in the KC region are reachable via transit in 90 minutes or less — ranking the Kansas City region 90th of the 100 largest metros. From a civil rights perspective, we may not be meeting the needs of minorities and low-income populations to get to work by transit. With such a low rate, we  probably aren’t meeting the transit needs of the whole community. Meeting the needs of minorities and low-income populations should be included upfront in any assessment for transportation planning.

MARC received a $1.2 million TIGER planning grant to STUDY the situation. The goal of KC Workforce Connex is doubling transit access to jobs over the next 10 years. A major study area will be along the I-435 corridor between the new Cerner campus and I-35 in Johnson County, which includes the busiest commuter corridor in the region, yet doesn’t have any transit.

D. MO Sales Tax For Transportation Failed

Transit Action Network believes Missouri shouldn’t pass a constitutional amendment to radically change the way we pay for roads and bridgesVotenoon 7 billboard

We spent several months working against this ballot initiative of a 3/4-cent sales tax for transportation, so we were pleased when it failed in August.

Video, Podcasts, Cartoon – VOTE NO On MO Amendment 7 

However, the funding issue for roads isn’t resolved. Raising the gas/diesel taxes is the easiest and cheapest method to administer and probably the smartest option, but Governor Nixon has asked for a study to investigate tolling on I-70. That starts 2015.

Happy New Year and join us in advocating for better transit in our region.

 

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Big Win for Seamless Transit – The JO Returns to KCATA

Posted by Transit Action Network on December 17, 2014


The Chair of KCATA Board of Commissioners,  Robbie Makinen, and Ed Eilert, Chair of the Johnson County Commission, took part in a signing ceremony transferring management of Johnson County’s transit to the KCATA.

Johnson County Commissioner Ed Eilert and KCATA Chair Robbie Makinen

Johnson County Commissioner Ed Eilert and KCATA Chair Robbie Makinen

After 30 years KCATA will manage the transit operations for Johnson County Transit again, which includes both The JO and the Special Edition (Johnson County service for seniors and people with disabilities). The signing of the inter-local Cooperative Agreement took place at the beginning of the KCATA monthly board meeting today. KCATA will take full responsibility for management on February 1, 2015, so this is a transition period.

To make this historic change happen Makinen said the “ATA needed to establish confidence and credibility within this region and with the re-structure that is the message they wanted to send.” Makinen lead the effort to re-organize the KCATA with the purpose of REALLY being the area transportation authority and managing (or both managing and operating) all of the public transit in the region as intended when the two states signed the bi-state compact creating the agency.

Commissioner Steve Klika

Commissioner Steve Klika

Steve Klika, Johnson County Commissioner, the County’s appointee to the KCATA Board and a major player in getting this agreement accomplished in record speed of six months, talked about his commitment to this goal for a long time. He joked that his personal effort toward Johnson County Transit was to figure out how to “turn the lights out, close the doors and turn the keys over to a regional entity”, which happened today. Klika said, “We have to understand that this is a big deal. It is starting to lead a path to the regionalization of transit.” He also acknowledged that there are funding issues to deal with going forward.

When asked about the benefit to riders, Commissioner Eilert felt the benefits are going to be “the ability to offer additional connections for transit services across the metro area and a major benefit is the ability of ATA to coordinate those efforts”. He said that Johnson County ‘s struggle has been to create ridership and they hope that ATA’s abilities will lead to an increase in riders.

Signing ceremony at the KCATA Board of Commissioners Dec 17, 2014

Signing ceremony at the KCATA Board of Commissioners Dec 17, 2014

Highlights of the agreement:

  • 2-year term with an annual base cost of $475,000 with a 3% annual cost escalator
  • Johnson County retains all final decisions relating to service policy and budget
  • KCATA staff will coordinate through the County’s Transit Liaison on management and administrative activities

In addition, KCATA has agreed to implement priority placement for Johnson County Transit staff affected by this agreement through March. 2015.

The KCATA Board of Commissioners authorized staff to enter into the inter-local agreement with Johnson County to provide transit management and administrative services for $430,000 in 2015 and $489,250 in 2016.

This agreement is the first major action to utilize the functions of the recently re-organized KCATA. Earlier in the year KCATA created separate departments for the KCATA relating to transit service

  1. KCATA Managed AND Operated bus service,
    1. the METRO,
    2. The METRO buses are driven by full and part-time KCATA employees; public transit bus drivers who belong to the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU).
  2. KCATA Managed but NOT Operated transit service
    1. Manage existing Share-A-Fare service for seniors and people with disabilities, for the areas served by the METRO
      1. Operated by a private contractor
    2. New function: Manage (not operate) transit service for Johnson County.
      1. The JO and the Special Edition buses will continue to be operated by a private operator.
      2. In Johnson County, the operator doesn’t own the buses or set the routes or the schedules. They provide part-time drivers to operate The JO and Special Edition buses. The JO currently runs 42 commuter buses during peak service hours, which is considered a small service. Riders will not see any difference in the operations to start.

KCATA management will replace management functions previously performed by Johnson County Transit (JCT), a department of Johnson County. The personnel changes will result in approximately $455,000 savings for Johnson County.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESAdditional savings are expected in the future since KCATA’s size provides greater purchasing power in capital acquisitions, such as buses, and operation costs, such as fuel. We also expect to see cost savings due to improvements to connections.

Users of the Johnson County services will still see familiar JCT faces at KCATA. Chuck Ferguson is now the KCATA Director of Planning. Shawn Strate is currently splitting his time between the two organizations, but he is now a Transit Planner at KCATA. There are several back office people from JCT that have moved to KCATA. Alice Amrein and Chris Lowe are staying at Johnson County. Amrein will be the liaison between the County and KCATA.

Riders shouldn’t expect immediate benefits or changes. There will be a transition period where KCATA learns all about The JO and Special Edition. KCATA has to evaluate the best way to integrate the services. Eliminating duplications or inefficiencies in service will take some time, but we hope the improvements are sooner rather than later and we will monitor the progress.

 In the short-term we hope to see better communications such as more schedules posted at bus stops for the JO and hopefully the electronic information boards working properly at the Mission Transit Center.

Once the full extent of the cost savings is evident KCATA should recommend more service. The Johnson County commissioners have committed to using the cost savings to improve and expand transit and not to divert the money for other purposes.

There are independent activities led by the Regional Transit Coordinating Council (RTCC) that will have an impact in 2015. A regional fare study is already being conducted as well as a study to create a single eligibility procedure in the region to use special transportation.

Transit Action Network sees this agreement as a big leap forward toward the seamless transit system we want to function in the region and we want to thank everyone involved in making this agreement happen.

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Be Prepared: Snow Removal for Walkers and Rollers

Posted by Transit Action Network on December 5, 2014


Picture from the Easter Seals report

Picture from the Easter Seals report

It is time again to start singing that old familiar refrain, “What about snow removal?” To get everyone tuned up and ready to go, here is a great resource from Easter Seals Project Action (ESPA). It is chock full of best practices from around the country and pertinent regulations to remind us of our responsibilities to those not driving. ES_Snow_Removal_Brief

Easter_Seals

The ability of to conduct your business and your life is as important to walkers and rollers as it is drivers.

“Including pedestrian facilities in snow and ice management policies reflects a community’s commitment to equal access, safety, economic vitality and quality of life.” Roger Millar, Vice President, Smart Growth America

 

 

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Online Transit Forum – Candidates for Johnson County Commission

Posted by Transit Action Network on October 21, 2014


johnson-county-kansas-logo

Transit Action Network asked all of the candidates running for office on the Johnson County Commission to answer questions about transit to help voters understand their positions on this critical issue. We appreciate candidates talking the time to respond to our questionnaire and sharing their philosophy, vision and ideas on transit.

The whole document with all the responses can be downloaded at the end of the article. Be sure to send this article to residents of Johnson County so they can be informed about the candidates’ positions.

The answers per district are given in the order TAN received them. We do not endorse a particular candidate but believe voters should be well-informed as to candidates’ knowledge of the subject and their positions.

Michael Ashcraft, incumbent for Commissioner of District 5, is running unopposed and he declined to participate.

TRANSIT ACTION NETWORK ONLINE TRANSIT FORUM – October 2014

 1. Broadening the Focus of The JO

Johnson County has very successfully increased jobs in the county, yet access to these jobs by public transit is extremely poor since The JO, a commuter service, only concentrates on taking people to jobs in downtown Kansas City. What is your commitment to increasing access to Johnson County jobs using The JO?

Ed Eilert

Ed Eilert

County Commissioner, Chair 

Ed Eilert – I anticipate that the new agreement with ATA will increase the opportunity for route connectivity within the metro. This should provide a wider range of transit options.

Patricia Lightner

Patricia Lightner

Patricia Lightner – The county needs to work to find the best solution to any transit issues including how to find ways to get people to their jobs without such a low ridership.  I would work to explore all alternatives in solving this issue and making it feasible to the county budget.

County Commissioner, 1st District  

Laura McConwell

Laura McConwell

Laura McConwellWe know as our demographics are changing and that transportation options become more important. We need to continue to find ways to make transit more reliable to for those living in Johnson County who need to get to work in Johnson County.

Ron Shaffer – Johnson County’s recent decision to allocate matching funds for a regional plan will help to double transit access over the next ten years. I am on the Board of Mid America Regional Council (MARC) which is overseeing and coordinating the plan to improve transit access to Johnson County Jobs. Also, as our cities become more walk-able and bike friendly, we are seeing a re-greening in the first tier suburban cities which comprise the northern portion of the First District.

Ron Shaffer

Ron Shaffer

Not only do we need to provide transit for workers in our neighborhoods, but also for seniors, disadvantaged, disabled and those living in poverty. These vulnerable citizens need the community to gather together to provide access to transportation so they can succeed. A cost effective increase in transit access hubs at employment centers, and at central and coordinated locations will be the first step towards more transit friendly neighborhoods, which in turn makes Johnson County more attractive as a resource for more jobs, benefitting the entire region.

County Commissioner, 4th District

Curt Skoog

Curt Skoog

Curt Skoog – The JO will become successful in the communities eyes when it connects people to the places they want to go. In the past, that was to Downtown KC. Tomorrow it will be down the street and across the metro to their work, schools, doctors and restaurants. This was demonstrated during the development of the Vision Metcalf Plan, residents, property owners and business owners overwhelmingly supported including transit on Metcalf. Due to this plan, which was approved by the Overland Park City Council, staff was able to secure federal funding to build modern transit stops and other transit infrastructure on Metcalf. I will continue to be committed to the Vision Metcalf Plan including its transit recommendations.

Jason Osterhaus

Jason Osterhaus

Jason Osterhaus – Over the last 4 years we have implemented many options that have increased access to Johnson County jobs, from maximizing routes to get more people to business’, to the addition of the Mission transit center and many of the other additions that the TIGER grants made possible.  I will continue with that commitment.

 2. Implementing Johnson County Transit Plans

Young adults, Millennials, are leaving Johnson County to be car-free in Kansas City. Demographics are changing and poverty levels are rising in Johnson County. These trends create the need for a more extensive transit service. How soon do you plan to fully implement Johnson County Transit’s Strategic Plan and the START (Strategic Transit Action Recommendation Taskforce) recommendations to use public transit to improve access to jobs, shopping and entertainment, and create mobility improvements?

County Commissioner, Chair 

Eilert – I do not see full implementation of the START recommendations in the near future. I have suggested that as development or re-development is planned along or near transit routes and if tax incentives are used to support those activities, that a portion of those incentives be used to support transit activities.

Lightner – I am not currently familiar with this program and would need to study to provide any comment.

County Commissioner, 1st District  

McConwell – Johnson County Transit’s Strategic Plan has not been updated since 2011 and START’s recommendation seem to be stalled. It is vital that we update our Plan and create a long term plan for the growth and density that is coming as our county ages and poverty increases. Additionally, the younger members of our community are seeking transportation options. This will allow us to make prudent investments. We needed to be committed for the long term.

Shaffer – While Millennials may be leaving Johnson County to be car-free, we are also seeing the Gen-Y’ers who are now moving back to the suburbs to raise their families. Thusly, we are welcoming the re-greening of our first tier suburban cities by assisting our new neighbors in their demands for more walk-able cities, bike-able trails as well as public transportation. The County’s strategic plan calls for a reliable and predictable dedicated funding stream for transit issues.  However we need to balance infrastructure, parks, sidewalks, and streets with the need for effective public transit. I support the County leader’s decision to help form the Regional Transit Coordinating Council that is working with all the regions transit agencies to improve coordination of services and passenger convenience. Striking a balance of budget cuts, revenue projections and recovering economy will allow us to prioritize our public transit investments as soon as practical.

County Commissioner, 4th District

Skoog – The Metcalf Corridor is the perfect location to start the transition of the JO from a commuter service to a connector service for the following reasons: 1. College and Metcalf is the center of the largest concentration of jobs in Johnson County. 2. The pending redevelopment of Metcalf South and other older retail centers will bring higher density of people and jobs to The Corridor. 3. It enables the connection of multiple other destinations including downtown Overland Park, 119th and Metcalf, Mission and The Plaza. 4. The transit infrastructure exists.

Osterhaus – Johnson County continuously works on implementing the Strategic Plan and opportunities like our recent merger with the KCATA allow us many more opportunities to provide the aforementioned access to jobs shopping and entertainment.

3. Funding for The JO

3a. Transit Action Network applauds Johnson County’s decision to switch to KCATA to manage its transit. We believe this change will result in greater service efficiencies and more seamless transit for riders. The change will result in significant costs savings, too. Will you make sure that transit budget is maintained and the savings from this change are used to improve and expand The JO service and not diverted to other functions? 

County Commissioner, Chair 

Eilert – a. Savings from the anticipated ATA contract should be reinvested in transit services.

Lightner – As Chair, I would need to be responsible to use our taxpayer dollars effectively and efficiently.  The savings will not automatically be applied to a failing and empty bus system just to keep it going.  The whole bus system would need to be re-reviewed and alternatives considered to provide the best ridership for public transportation as areas and demand are needed.

County Commissioner, 1st District  

McConwell – a. The savings should be kept with the transportation budget and allow Johnson County to continue to improve services.

Shaffer – a. I will work to keep the savings generated by the KCATA management contract, which I understand is projected to save Johnson County about $500,000 a year, to remain in the transit budget and not be transferred to supplement other budget categories. In any case, the County will need a year’s experience to document actual savings and until that number is confirmed, it will be difficult to project what monies will need to be considered to accomplish additional transit services.

County Commissioner, 4th District

Skoog – a. Today The JO has proven that people will ride public transportation (K10 Connector) if it is convenient and takes people to places they want to go. It runs nearly every 30 minutes all day long. I support using the savings to upgrade service on Metcalf to the K10 connector level. If this is successful in ridership and supporting economic development then I would look to expand the level of service to other Johnson County corridors.

Osterhaus – a. The Savings that we will see from the KCATA merger will stay with Johnson CountyTransit.

 3b. Currently local transit funding in Johnson County comes out of a mill levy on property taxes. Would you consider a small county-wide transit tax or an increase in the mill levy to help improve the transit system?  Please explain your reasoning.

County Commissioner, Chair 

Eilert – b. No authority exists for a county wide transit tax. I do not anticipate a mill levy increase for transit as the county continues to evaluate expected revenue losses for the general fund which have been imposed by state legislative action.

Lightner – b. No Response

County Commissioner, 1st District  

McConwell b. We, as a community, need to have a long term transit plan so that we can determine where and how best to provide transportation system. Once we have created a plan, then we will be prepared to discuss the best way to implement the system which includes funding. I am not in favor of raising revenue if we don’t have a good plan in place.

Shaffer – b. There has been great relief, as a result of substantial changes at all levels of the County Government, that the County weathered the recession by doing as well as it did while holding the mill levy steady. Thusly, I would not be inclined to consider a county-wide transit tax or mill levy increase for improvements to the transit system until all options are explored, including savings from the KCATA merger. I do support Johnson County’s continued investment in Public Transit, and will work with the staff and the Commission to ensure that transit remains a key priority in all annual budget and revenue decisions.

County Commissioner, 4th District

Skoog – b. Until connector level transit service has proven it value to the community funding will continue to be a challenge. Once proven I believe that a county wide consensus can be built to fund expansion of the connector service.

Osterhaus – b. No I wouldn’t support a county wide transit tax.  Over the last 4 years we have shown that we can make transit more efficient and save money in various ways. I fought to correct the KCATA federal funding formula that resulted in $900,000 to Johnson County and the KCATA merger which will also save the county hundreds of thousands of dollars.  There are ways to make the Transit more efficient, which I would like to see before we raise taxes on people coming out of a recession.

4. Allowing Access to the Special Edition Bus

4a. Johnson County excludes people with disabilities who don’t live in Johnson County from using the Special Edition bus, yet people with disabilities who do live in Johnson County can get qualified to ride any of the other paratransit services in the region (Share-A-Fare, Dial-A-Ride or IndeAccess). Would you rewrite the eligibility rules for the Special Edition bus to make them consistent with the rest of the region and accept all individuals qualified under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), thereby providing equal opportunity and access to jobs, shopping and entertainment in Johnson County for all people in the region with disabilities?

County Commissioner, Chair 

Eilert – a. It is my understanding that the category of service provided by the JO does not fall under that requirement. The ability to expand would depend on financial capabilities.

Lightner – a. As Chair, my responsibility is to residents of Johnson County, I would need to study this issue more closely to determine if things should be changed.

County Commissioner, 1st District  

McConwell a. As the former co-chair of the Regional Transportation Coordinating Council, I can say that the Council (made up of the 6 largest transportation providers) is working to make our transportation system user friendly. RTCC is making great strides with mapping, fare systems and now with KCATA/JoCo’s agreement. Ease of travel for those with disabilities within the system is something that the groups are working toward as well.

Shaffer – a. As well as a MARC Board Member, I am on the United Community Service Board of Directors and am becoming increasingly aware of our neighbors who have disabilities and special needs. I believe in a regional approach by working together as a community across State and County Lines to provide the best service and cost effectiveness. The Regional Transit Coordinating Council is working to develop plans that will provide transportation for special needs citizens across the region. I support these efforts and look to streamline the eligibility requirements and processes to improve service to our most vulnerable citizens.

County Commissioner, 4th District

Skoog – a. Seniors and people with disabilities need access to transportation across the region to access jobs, shopping and medical services. A regional solution should be developed that reduces redundancy and manages cost.

Osterhaus – a. The Merger with the KCATA will offer us many opportunities in para-transit just like the integration of other forms of transit.  Johnson County has partnerships with companies like 10/10 taxi that allow us to greatly expand our Para-transit services, and I would be open to expanding those to the rest of the Metro as well. 

 4b. The JO has service to smaller cities such as Gardner yet the Special Edition bus does not serve that community. Would you consider expanding the area covered by the Special Edition paratransit service to include all of Johnson County or at least the areas serviced by The JO? Please explain your position.  

County Commissioner, Chair 

Eilert – b. Savings from the ATA contract could be used to supplement that service. The JO should investigate private sector possibilities similar to the 10-10 Taxi operation, such as the HWY 56 Taxi service that operates in the Gardner-Edgerton area.

Lightner – b. Again the feasibility and cost factors would need to be studied and determine if there is some real need and some cost effectiveness there to support this system change.

County Commissioner, 1st District  

McConwell – b. I am willing to have the conversation but we would need to include the cities, chambers, etc. before making a decision to expand services to the outer parts of the County. Our transportation system is extremely expensive to build and maintain…..which is why we need to have a LONG range plan for transit and how it is built out. It does not serve anyone or any population well to make unsustainable expansions of the system. I believe that we need to have a robust transportation system and it will take many years to create.

Shaffer – b. I will be interested in further exploring this issue. With a minimum number of riders, it might be more cost effective to provide service through a private contractor, flex-pass or voucher system. I will bring my years of dedication, service and leadership, of serving on Regional Boards and committees to the successful resolution of this issue as well as the other issues discussed above. As with all issues, I will work with staff and the Commission to make transit a key priority over the next four years.

County Commissioner, 4th District

Skoog – b. Seniors and people with disabilities need access to transportation across the region to access jobs, shopping and medical services. A regional solution should be developed that reduces redundancy and manages cost.

Osterhaus – b. I favor expansion in to any of the areas that are not currently served.  Our partnership with 10/10 taxi and others allows us to provide service to many areas that aren’t covered by the Special Edition.

2014 TAN’s JoCo Online Transit Forum

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JCT Ribbon Cutting For The New Transit Center

Posted by Transit Action Network on July 2, 2013


The_JO_ConnexJohnson County Transit (JCT) postponed the ribbon cutting for its new Mission Transit Center for a whole month, but the wait was worth it. July 1st was a beautiful day to celebrate the official opening of the Allen Roth Transit Center. Johnson County Board of County Commissioners Chairman Ed Eilert spoke at the dedication of the Allen Roth Transit Center in Mission.

Allen Roth Mission Transit Center Entrance at 5251 Johnson Drive, Mission, Kansas

Allen Roth Mission Transit Center Entrance at 5251 Johnson Drive, Mission, Kansas

The new transit center has 73 transit departures  from this location every weekday.  The Transit Center  is located  at 5251 Johnson Dr. Parking is next to Wendys on the south side of Martway just east of the transit center.

Connex bus 556Although the transit center serves 5 additional JCT routes  (546, 660, 661, 667, and 672) , the big excitement is over the introduction of the new CONNEX service.

CONNEX is the brand for the Metcalf / Shawnee Mission Parkway route (556/856). The route began operating under this brand name on June 3, 2013. There are 17 round trips daily between 119th or 135th and Metcalf on the south, and the Plaza / UMKC / Rockhurst on the north and east.

The JO has six of these buses for use on this route. Each seats 25 passengers.

Midday trips are often operated using smaller buses since these trips may “flex” off-route to pick up or let off passengers who have made advance arrangements.

Socializing before the dedication ceremony begins.

Socializing before the dedication ceremony begins.

Dedication ceremonies begin, July 1, 2013.

Dedication ceremonies begin, July 1, 2013.

Johnson County Board of County Commissioners Chairman Ed Eilert speaks at the dedication of the Allen Roth Transit Center in Mission.

Johnson County Board of County Commissioners Chairman Ed Eilert speaks at the dedication of the Allen Roth Transit Center in Mission.

Elected officials cut the ribbon to dedicate the new Allen Roth Transit Center in Mission, Kansas. July 1, 2013.

Elected officials cut the ribbon to dedicate the new Allen Roth Transit Center in Mission, Kansas. July 1, 2013.

Connex bus going

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JCT Ribbon Cutting For Mission Transit Center – July 1, The JO CONNEX – June 3

Posted by Transit Action Network on May 30, 2013


TIGERThe_JO_ConnexJoin Johnson County Transit at their ribbon cutting event for the new Mission Transit Center.
Where: Mission Transit Center, 5251 Johnson Drive, Mission, Kan.
When: Friday, May 31, 8:30 a.m. Re-scheduled to Monday, July 1

The new transit center will enhance transit service along the Metcalf/Shawnee Mission Parkway Corridor. The transit center is one feature of the extensive infrastructure improvements in this corridor made possible by a federal $10.7 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant. At the ribbon cutting, JCT will provide exhibits of before-and-after transformations along the transit corridor and information about enhancements to the transit services in Johnson County, Kan.

Effective June 3rd, many of The JO buses will change their routes in order to utilize this new Transit Center.   Route 556/856 will be re-branded as The JO CONNEX, an enhanced route with limited-stop service, which will use the new infrastructure in the Metcalf/Shawnee Mission Parkway Corridor.

JCT Proposed_Schedules_June_2013

For questions regarding the ribbon cutting:
Contact Brian Scovill at 913.895.6052 or Alice Amrein at 913.715.8352.

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Public Hearings On JCT Fare Increase – Feb 12 and 14

Posted by Transit Action Network on February 11, 2013


Johnson County Transit is proposing a fare increase effective April 15, 2013. Public meetings are being held this week.

DATE and TIME:

Tuesday, February 12 from 7 am to 8 am 
Thursday, February 14  from 5: 30 pm  to 6:30 pm

LOCATION:

Sylvester Powell Community Center (meeting room C)
6200 Martway
Mission, KS 66202

Additional comments can be made through March 15 by:

Email: Comments@thejo.com
Phone: 913-715-8255 to leave a recorded message

Mail:

Proposed Fare increase Comments
Johnson County Transit
1701 West 56 Highway
Olathe, Kansas 66061

 Proposed Fare Increases

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Proposed cash fares increases are 50 cents for K-10 and 25 cents for most other routes.

There is an anomaly though because the proposed cash fare increase for Route 812/Jo Flex is $1.25, which is significantly more than the other fare increases. Low-income people living in HUD section 8 housing in Overland Park mainly use this route to get groceries, medicines and other basic needs.  We discussed this route in our Title VI claim dealing with the service cuts. Johnson County does not classify this route as low-income but TAN disagrees. This fare increase appears to place a disproportionate burden on the low-income people who use this route.

Here are the percentage increases to the base cash fares.

K-10 has a 16.7% increase – JCT has identified the K-10 route as both a minority and low-income route

Most Jo routes have a 12.5% increase

Route 812/Jo Flex  has a 125% increase

Equity – Although it is obvious that JCT is proposing that all the non K-10 routes have the same base fare of $2.25, we are concerned that this could create an Environmental Justice issue. We will have to see if the FTA decides that Route 812/Jo Flex is indeed a low-income route.  Different modes of transit service may have different fares without being discriminatory.  Route 812/Jo Flex mainly serves low-income people two days a week for 4 hours, so it hardly seems fair to increase their base fare 125% just to make it the same as the standard and commuter express routes for daily commuters. For riders of Route 812/Jo Flex over 60 years old, they can get relief from the high increase if they purchase a 10 ride reduced fare pass. However, younger low-income people will feel the full brunt of this increase.

Process – We wonder when public meetings will be held in the KCK or KCMO areas that JCT serves?  How do riders or potential riders using a reverse commute and needing a northbound bus after 6:30 pm, when this meeting ends, get to KCK or KCMO using transit? We hope there was a public meeting in Lawrence. Inadequate public participation was the basis of our Title VI claim for the service cuts and we see similar problems with the process for the fare increase.

Fare Structure – We question the wisdom of continuing a fare structure under which very long morning / evening commuter trips from Gardner or Olathe via I-35 have the same fare as much shorter “errand” trips on local streets, such as the 75th Street – Quivira and Metcalf – Shawnee Mission Parkway routes.  KCATA has two categories of routes — regular ($1.50 fare) and commuter (generally $3.00).

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Title VI Claim Filed Against Johnson County Transit

Posted by Transit Action Network on January 9, 2013


bnr_rotate_2Transit Action Network filed a Title VI* claim with the Federal Transit Administration Civil Rights Division against Johnson County Transit (JCT) on December 14, 2012 in response to service cuts effective January 2, 2013. Additional signatories to the complaint are The Whole Person, Metro Organization for Racial and Economic Equity, and Westwood Christian Church.The Federal Transit Administration

The FTA Civil Rights Division is reviewing the service cuts for compliance with Title VI of the Federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, conformance with FTA Circulars 4702.1A and 4702.1B, and Environmental Justice issues under Executive Order 128998, “Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-income Populations.”

Johnson County failed to get the FTA Civil Rights Division to review and approve the service cuts before the Johnson County Board of Commissioners approved the plan. The only way to get the service cuts reviewed now was to file a formal complaint.

The basis of our disparate impact claim (see FTA Powerpoint presentation)  is that riders and potential riders were harmed by Johnson County Transit’s inadequate and exclusionary public participation process, which did not conform with Title VI requirements of the Federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, therefore denying Minority and Low-Income Populations an opportunity for their issues to be considered as part of the decision-making process.

Johnson County Poverty

Data provided by United Community Services of Johnson County

In addition to the deficiencies in the public participation process, TAN raised numerous other areas of concern about the service cuts:

  • The Title VI analysis prepared by Johnson County Transit appears to be missing required data.
  • The inferior service levels provided to Minority and Low-Income Populations throughout the JCT service area
  • Segmenting-chipping away at minority routes to eliminate them while avoiding Title VI requirements
  • The impact to Minorities with Disabilities
  • The 33% service cut on Route 812/J may place a disproportionate burden on the Low-Income Population that uses this route, which causes an Environmental Justice issue.
    • This route serves numerous elderly transit dependent people living in Section 8 HUD housing who depend on this route to acquire basic needs such as fresh food, medicines and clothing.
  • The Johnson County Board of County Commissioners priority list for retaining service, which JCT was directed to use, appears to be discriminatory.
  • JCT does not comply with its own Title VI program to put bus stop signs at every time point and/or every half-mile, therefore making the transit service virtually invisible in minority areas, such as around the University of Kansas Medical School in Kansas City, Kansas.  This lack of public information contributes to their low ridership numbers.

Johnson County does a great job attracting economic development and creating jobs, yet a very small percentage of those jobs are accessible by transit. This situation is reflected in both the 2011 and 2012 Brookings Institution reports on job access by transit. In 2011 the Kansas City region was 90th of 100 and in 2012 it was 94th of 100 in its ability to provide access to jobs by transit. Johnson County is the main reason for the low ranking since it has a large portion of the jobs yet the commuter service has not adjusted to the new realities of suburban job location. Most of the transit is still focused on moving non-minority, middle and upper-income individuals into Downtown Kansas City, MO where only 14% of the region’s jobs exist.

In addition, even though Johnson County’s Minority and Low-Income Populations have increased significantly, the commuter service has not adjusted to address the needs of these residents, let alone needs of people in their greater service area.

TAN will gladly work with Johnson County Transit, the Johnson County BOCC and the FTA to resolve or mitigate the issues in any way we can.

For more information about the claim see the supplemental documentation we provided the FTA.

Title VI Claim-JCT DEC 2102 And Attachments  Title VI claim-JCT Dec2012, A1Jan 2013 route changes-eliminations, A2BoCC priorities matched with routes, A3Save The Jo handout

*FTA Powerpoint presentation explaining Title VI of the Federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 Title_VI_of_the_Civil_RIghts_Act_of_1964

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Jackson County AA Study Team Will Reveal Recommendations Tomorrow

Posted by Transit Action Network on November 26, 2012


Tomorrow, November 27, consultant recommendations from the Jackson County Commuter Corridors Alternatives Analysis will be presented to stakeholders in the morning, and to the public that afternoon.

 Transit consultant Parsons Brinckerhoff (PB), guided by Mid-America Regional Council, Jackson County, Kansas City, and Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, has been studying commuter needs in three corridors for nearly three years.  Work on the I-70 and Rock Island corridors is about complete, while work on the third corridor, US-71, got started late and is farther behind.

Here’s what we expect tomorrow:

[1] – Commuter rail is in.  Commuter rail will be recommended in the I-70 corridor since the underlying motivation for the AA was to find a way to make commuter rail workable.

[2] – Union Station is out.  Union Station is out and Third and Grand is back in as the western terminus for commuter rail from eastern Jackson County. This is the site of the current KCATA park-and-ride lot and the end of the MAX and future Downtown Streetcar lines.  Jackson County tried to work with Kansas City Terminal Railway to get access to Union Station, but latest indications are that KCT has not been interested in a capacity analysis on their tracks to see if it could be made to work — not even if Jackson County pays for the study.  Union Station has been the preferred terminus from the beginning, so we expect to hear that some day commuter rail might go there.  Realistically, that isn’t likely if hundreds of millions of dollars are spent going to Third and Grand.

 [3] – No CEI.  We had anticipated that the study would include a Cost-Effectiveness Index (CEI) for each rail corridor.  However, indications are that it won’t.  The CEI is a standard measure of costs and benefits (and thus of relative merit) used by the Federal Transit Administration in evaluating projects that compete for federal funding.  Omission of this measure is disappointing in light of the emphasis PB’s Shawn Dikes put on it at the first stakeholder meeting.  A rule of thumb in transit studies is that following FTA procedures is a good indication of whether a project makes sense – whether FTA funding is to be sought or not.

We suspect the Study Team knows without doing the calculations that commuter rail in this corridor isn’t cost-effective by FTA standards, and just doesn’t want to release unfavorable information – even though more than $1.2 million has been spent on the study.  Our preference is to have the CEI as an objective comparison to recent commuter rail projects in other cities, and to thus have a better-informed electorate.  Thus, we’re disappointed that PB hasn’t stayed true to its original focus on the importance of the CEI number.

 [4] – There is political and popular support for transit.  Unlike in 2007, there is political will to take a transit and trails package to the voters, even if we have to pay locally for most of any rail proposal.  The AA might not support federal funding for rail, but people do a lot of things subjectively, and there’s a widely held perception that the Kansas City Region should have rail.  Commuter rail might still be five years or more away – detailed environmental studies related to impacts on Kessler Park plus construction will take time.

 [5] – The Package.  We don’t expect to find out much tomorrow about the comprehensive package Jackson County will ultimately take to the voters late next year, but it’s safe to say it will include something for everyone:

  • One line for commuter rail.
  • A hefty trails plan that includes the old Rock Island right-of-way as a connection to the cross-state Katy Trail.
  • Upgraded express bus service with more frequent peak hour trips, plus at least a few midday trips.
  • New transit routes to connect the various cities, especially in Eastern Jackson County.
  • Something significant for Kansas City.  The city already pays for the region’s highest level of transit service, including two popular BRT routes, a Downtown Streetcar line expected to begin construction in 2013, and more than a dozen routes that operate 7 days a week.  Jackson County has been talking about BRT on Prospect, and we’re interested to see what else the County has planned to entice KCMO residents.

Tuesday is the day to watch.  The Stakeholder Advisory Panel will meet at MARC at 8:00 am to hear and respond to the recommendations for the corridors, followed by the Open House for the public at 140 Walnut in River Market between 4:00 and 6:00 pm.

So there you have it – what we think we know.  We’re willing to be proven wrong, of course.  But we can promise you one thing:  It’s going to be One Interesting Tuesday.

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Metcalf Connex – I-435 and Metcalf

Posted by Transit Action Network on September 24, 2012


This photo looks northeast from the southwest corner of I-435 (EB off-ramp) and Metcalf.

Putting bus service on Metcalf — much less a premium service such as Johnson County Transit’s pre-BRT* “Connex” service — is a challenge.

There is no sidewalk on the west side of Metcalf between 107th and 110th. Sidewalks are under construction along other segments of Metcalf (including the east side of Metcalf through this interchange), but there’s no evidence of it here. Not yet, anyway. Moreover, there’s no evidence — not yet, anyway — that there will be a crosswalk with pedestrian signals. This off-ramp has five lanes — three for left turns and two for right. The crossing distance is roughly 90 feet, 22.5 seconds at the 4-feet-per-second standard walking speed used by traffic engineers.

For transit to work there need to be sidewalks along both sides of the transit street. That’s especially true for a BRT route where stops are a half-mile or a mile apart.

In addition, there need to be good sidewalk approaches along cross streets, in addition to links to buildings that front on the transit street itself.

Those are tall orders for a part of our region that was built with moving cars as the number one guiding design principle.

This view looks almost empty but even at 2:51 in the afternoon there’s a LOT of traffic.

And signal cycles are long: two minutes or more. Imagine waiting to cross Metcalf to catch your bus. You see it approaching in the distance, but by the time you get a WALK light and get across the street your bus has already passed. Next bus in 30 minutes, if you’re lucky.

There’s no question that transit improvements being made along Metcalf using the federal TIGER (Transportation Investments Generating Economic Recovery) grant awarded to JCT in 2009 will make the corridor look more attractive, and will actually raise the visibility of transit on Metcalf. Attractive bus shelters with real-time schedule signs will be placed at stops, and traffic signal priority (TSP) will be installed to help buses get through signalized intersections quicker.

Still, it’s going to be tough to give Metcalf the look and feel of a transit street.

For transit to work there, Metcalf needs to be totally re-conceptualized and rebuilt south of 87th Street.

Overland Park has its work cut out for it.

Related photos:
Site of SB Connex stop at 110th and Metcalf.
www.flickr.com/photos/58867268@N03/8010260167/

Preparation for NB Connex stop at 110th and Metcalf.
www.flickr.com/photos/58867268@N03/8010267924/

*BRT = Bus Rapid Transit’

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Attend Johnson County Transportation Council Meeting Sept. 18 – 5:30 pm

Posted by Transit Action Network on September 14, 2012


The Johnson County Transportation Council meeting will discuss the REVISED proposed eliminations and reductions to service, effective Jan 2, 2013.  A public comment section is on the agenda. Please attend and make your feelings known about the proposed changes. The council changed its regular meeting time in response to comments received about the service reductions. JCTC wants to hear from you.

Johnson County Transportation Council Meeting

Where: Sylvester Powell Community Center
6200 Martway in Mission
Kansas 66202
 
When: Sept 18th @ 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm

Meeting packet agenda JCTCpacket20120918

Revised Proposal for Eliminations and Reductions JCTC20120814ServiceReductionRec

Previous blog article JCT Releases Revised Proposal for Cuts – Save The JO

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JCT Releases Revised Proposal for Cuts – Save The JO

Posted by Transit Action Network on August 28, 2012


Johnson County Transit (JCT) has released a Revised JCT Service Reductions Aug 14,2012 report for eliminations and reductions to its transit system.

Summary of the revised proposal:

Eliminate five routes (instead of nine)
Reduce/combine service on the four other routes that were proposed for elimination
Make additional schedule modifications on four other routes based on comments and service efficiencies.

Here are the original 9 routes slated for eliminations with some of our comments. Review the JCT report for additional information. Keep in mind that JCT is still reviewing the routes and could make more changes.

Routes Originally Proposed for Elimination

Three Routes Eliminated Totally
Route 676-P – Paola/Spring Hill/Olathe Eliminating this route and Route 816 will leave these communities and seniors without any transit. The Special Edition does not operate in Spring Hill and Paola.
Route 810 – DeSoto FlexRide This change will leave this community and seniors without any transit. The Special Edition does not operate in DeSoto.
Route 816 – Spring Hill Shuttle Eliminating this route and Route 676 will leave this community and seniors without any transit. The Special Edition does not operate in Spring Hill.
Eliminate 667-R and 669-I and combine with 546-D into one new route
Route 546-D – Johnson/Quivira, Route 677-R – Downtown/Olathe, Route 669-I – KCK/Lenexa/Olathe Eliminate current routes I, R and D but combine them into a new Route 546-D. The new Route 546-D would have only 9 trips instead of the current 16. The northern end would be in KCK. The southern end is usually at 116th and Renner. See the proposed map. One trip extends south to 127th & Mur-Len (Villa St. Francis) to serve 7:00-3:30 workday (currently served by Route 669/I) One trip extends to Ridgeview to serve 8:00-5:00 workday  (currently served by Route 677/R
Keep routes instead of eliminating them; make significant service reductions.
Route 66-E – Nall/Downtown – Reduce from 4 to 2 trips This reduces service between Johnson County and Wyandotte counties. This is the only JO service that goes to KU Med. Routes with only one morning and one evening trip are bound to fail. The national transit-consulting firm Nelson Nygaard recommends at least 6 trips (3 each way) to make a successful commuter route. If they must reduce service, JCT needs to consider other options in order to keep the four trips.
Route 672-M – JoCo/Downtown Midday – Keep but eliminate Metcalf portion of route The route would travel from Mission to OPM on Shawnee Mission Parkway, I-35, and US-69, instead of using Metcalf and 95th. This re-routing should save 10-15 minutes per trip. Transfers to Metcalf destinations can be made via 856 in Mission. South of Oak Park Mall, the route would remain unchanged. Downtown employees who want additional midday flexibility could take MAX to the Plaza and transfer to 856, or to Waldo and transfer to 875.
Route 812 JO Flex– Reduce from 3 days to 2 days This change is better than eliminating the route.

Transit Action Network knows that JCT is trying to combine routes and provide as much transit as possible for its current riders given the budgetary restrictions and instructions from the County Commissioners. We are also aware that unless the County makes significant budget changes, all of these routes and more may be eliminated in 2014.

click to enlarge

Below is the Commission’s transit priority list that JCT is directed to implement over the next two years as a result of a reduction in federal and state funds.

The Board of County Commissioners Transit priorities (in order of importance):

  • Protect the most vulnerable county residents by maintaining Special Edition and SWIFT services.
  • Support TIGER investments by maintaining service on the Metcalf and Shawnee Mission Parkway corridor
  • Maintain I-35 Xpress (Bus on Shoulder Routes)
  • Maintain K-10 Connector
  • Continue Local Services and Local Links

Our concern is the county’s lack of commitment to developing a full service transit system. In terms of transit, Johnson County thinks like a small city instead of a big wealthy county. Blue Springs, Missouri has a population of slightly over 50,000 people. For transit it normally considers an OATS bus for seniors and the disabled and a few commuter express buses as sufficient, although Blue Springs is  working very hard to get commuter rail. Johnson County, with a population of 544,000, has stated a position that supports a similar low level of bus transit, with one exception. They want to keep the new Metcalf/Shawnee Mission Parkway and 75th Street/Quivira CONNEX routes. So do we, but these routes need to be paid for with new county funds instead of transferring funds from the current transit system.  Johnson County accepted a $10.7 million TIGER grant from the federal government for improvements along the M/SMP corridor, and they would have to return the money if they cancelled these routes. Yet the county refuses to add new money to the transit budget to replace the three-year start up money the federal government gave them for operating expenses on these routes.

Board of Commissioners Chairman Ed Eilert complains about the cost per rider and farebox recovery ratio on some of these routes, yet he knows that the main CONNEX service has far worse performance numbers than nearly all of the regular routes they are proposing to eliminate, such as Routes 669-I, 667-E, 672-M and the JO Flex.

Routes originally proposed for elimination Example: Farebox recovery ratio
672-M 17%
669-I 15%
667-E 14%
JO Flex 11%
Major CONNEX Route – protected
556 Metcalf/Plaza 9%
856 Metcalf/Plaza Flex 7%

The disingenuous nature of the Commission’s priorities is very concerning. Providing transit for seniors is at the top of their list, yet eliminating the local service in Spring Hill, Paola and DeSoto will leave their elderly populations stranded once again, since the Special Edition bus doesn’t service those areas.

The county won’t eliminate all of the proposed routes at this point in time or they might be in violation of Title VI of the Federal Civil Rights Act. The Act says if you receive federal funds, you can’t eliminate service to minority and low-income populations in a discriminatory manner. Of the original proposed eliminations, routes 546-D – Johnson/Quivira, 667-E – Nall/ Downtown, and 669-I – KCK/Lenexa/Olathe have significant service to areas with higher percentages of minority and low-income populations. These routes would be eliminated based on the Commission’s directions to JCT.

You still have time to comment to the Commission on the changes being proposed. Final BoCC action is planned for October 18.

Contact Johnson County Board of County Commissioners

  1. Phone: 913-715-0430
  2. Email contact form: http://bocc.jocogov.org/webform/contact-us
  3. Chairman: Ed Eilert (913) 715-0500
  4. District 1: Ed Peterson  (913) 715-0431
  5. District 2: Jim Allen  (913) 715-0432
  6. District 3: David Lindstrom (913) 715-0433
  7. District 4: Jason Osterhaus (913) 715-0434
  8. District 5: Michael Ashcraft (913) 715-0435
  9. District 6: Calvin Hayden  (913) 715-0436

JCT Tentative Timeline –

• Joint JCTC/BoCC meeting on August 30, 2012, 11 am, Board of County Commission’s hearing room on the third floor of the County Administration Building in Olathe
• Present final recommendations at JCTC meeting on September 18, 2012
• Submit JCT/JCTC recommendations to BoCC on October 4, 2012.
• Agenda Review: October 11
• Final BoCC Action: October 18
• Final changes posted the week of October 22, 2012
• Changes will begin operation on January 2, 2013

The Johnson County Transportation Council (JCTC) meeting on September 18 will be held at 5:30 pm at Sylvester Powell: 6200 Martway, Mission, KS so that more people can be present to hear the presentation of the final recommendations and hear the discussion.

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Save The JO Video #7 – Seniors Speak Up

Posted by Transit Action Network on August 17, 2012


Route #812 is The JO Flex service in Overland Park. It doesn’t cover a lot of Johnson County but it is a necessity for the people who depend on it. Watch seniors at Santa Fe Towers Apartments speak about their situation and concerns about the proposed elimination of this service.

The JO flex service covers a rectangle from 75th Street on the north, Lamar on the east, 95th  Street on the south and Quivira on the west. The service is limited between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. You don’t have to qualify to ride the #812, since it is available to anyone in the service area. Two very large retirement communities are significant users of the route, Overland Towers and Santa Fe Towers Apartments.

The JO Flex is more cost-effective than the new showcase CONNEX route #556 that JCT will retain. The JO Flex has better farebox recovery, cost per rider and ridership per trip than the CONNEX route.

The County Commissioners have said elderly, disabled and low-income populations will have the Special Edition, which is a shared ride program, providing transportation for registered and qualified residents of Johnson County. Usually you can’t call the day before to schedule a ride because the service is already full. The Special Edition only uses buses with a capacity of 10-12 people, where the JO Flex uses larger more comfortable buses. The JO Flex fare is $1, so a trip to the grocery store is $2. The Special Edition fare is $5, so the same trip would cost $10. Switching all of The JO Flex riders over to the more expensive, smaller, over-crowded Special Edition seems like a losing proposition.

Please keep the more affordable Route #812 JO Flex.

Contact Johnson County Board of County Commissioners

  1. Phone: 913-715-0430
  2. Email contact form: http://bocc.jocogov.org/webform/contact-us

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All About Smog – One More Reason to Save the JO

Posted by Transit Action Network on August 14, 2012


This is a Missouri Dept. of Natural Resources photo from August 13, 2012 from Blue Ridge Mall looking at downtown Kansas City. The KCPT tower, right-middle of the photo, is 3 miles away and the downtown skyline is 8 miles away. On a bad day, you can’t see the tower and on a really bad day even the skyline disappears from view. So what is smog?

The term “smog” was coined at the turn of the century to describe the hazy horizon of industrialized European cities, but around the 1950s, vehicle emissions began to take the place of factories in creating this noxious mixture of “smoke” and “fog”. Smog is a haze we see today during our hot and humid summers. This combination of ground-level ozone, nitrogen dioxide, hydrocarbons and dust particles is monitored regularly and regulated by the US EPA due to increasing health concerns for sensitive populations like children, the elderly and people with allergies or asthma.

In Kansas City, emergency room visits and hospital admissions increase significantly when ground-level ozone concentrations are high. Ground-level ozone irritates the eyes and nose, causes inflammation, difficulty breathing and even chest pain. It is formed by emissions from vehicles, power plants and other sources mixing with heat and sunlight, which is why summer is the most troublesome for air quality. Poor air quality knows no political boundaries, though, and smog will often creep northward with the warm, south winds of summer.

There is something we can all do to help. With daily work commutes averaging around 20 miles, multiple highway corridors, and abundant parking, it’s easy to see why so many folks in the Kansas City area drive to work. It’s also easy to see how our routines are contributing nearly half of the ozone forming emissions that contribute to poor air quality. Leaving your car at home even twice a week can save over 270 pounds of harmful ozone-forming emissions.

The MidAmerica Regional Council’s RideShare Connection is hosting the Green Commute Challenge now through September 28th to help raise awareness of air quality issues, reduce use of single-occupant vehicles in the peak summer season, and encourage transit use across the metro area through an employer-based contest. Thirty teams have joined from across the Kansas City area and over 900 people are taking the challenge to use alternative transportation.

Between bicycling, riding the bus or carpooling to work, and walking or simply staying in for lunch, the challenge has already reduced emissions by over 250,000 pounds. That’s like taking 14,000 cars off the road for a day. During the 12-week challenge, participants track their trips online and earn points. It’s a great way to see how our individual choices can add up to big benefits and many participants are using public transportation to earn serious points for their teams.

We can all do our part for air quality and using transit is a great way to start. And you don’t have to wait for national fuel efficiency standards or alternative energy sector growth to help! Compared to other household actions, using transit can reduce emissions by more than 10 fold.  A robust public transportation system is one of the very best investments any community can make to minimize emissions and reduce greenhouse gases. Transit can’t beat bicycling or other no-emission commutes, but modern buses are often hybrids using natural gas, biodiesel and other low emission fuels. The KCATA Metro MAX has several hybrid and clean diesel vehicles and both KCATA and The JO will be adding natural gas vehicles to their fleet.

Does being a transit rider make you an air quality hero? It depends who you ask but there’s no doubt that reducing even a few solitary commuting trips in your car can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global climate change and poor local air quality. Kansas City had 18 Ozone Alert days already in 2012, up from only 9 last year and 4 in 2010. We’ve exceeded ozone concentration standards 16 times this year and we’re setting a pace to top the last 2 years combined for quantifiable poor air quality. Poor air quality affects everyone’s health and it can make doing business more expensive as tighter regulations are enacted to meet basic national standards.

When local budgets get tight and cuts seem imminent, priorities have to be defined to guide the process, but with growing concerns about air quality and the human health impacts a very clear reality in the Kansas City metro area, you have to ask: why is public transportation not a priority in Johnson County? How can eliminating bus routes by 45% (and reducing service on another 45% of routes) serve our collective goals for air quality when it is the first, best way to reduce harmful ozone-causing emissions? We don’t believe cutting bus services voluntarily is in the best interest of Johnson County or the collective community when it comes to air quality issues or the kind of reliable public transportation system the public increasingly demands.

It’s not too late to improve air quality in Kansas City. From alternative fuel blends and hybrid vehicles to using low emissions paint in our homes and native landscaping in our yards, people across the metro are doing so much to reduce harmful greenhouse gases and ground-level ozone in our community. Using transit is one of the most effective things you can do to help ease air pollution and prevent smog from ever forming. The only question is: if you live or work in Johnson County, will you still have the transit option in 2013?

Contact Johnson County Board of County Commissioners

  1. Phone: 913-715-0430
  2. Email contact form: http://bocc.jocogov.org/webform/contact-us

http://finances.msn.com/saving-money-advice/6804691

http://www.marc.org/Environment/airQ/pdf/FAQfourpage.pdf

http://www.dnr.mo.gov/env/esp/aqm/kccam.htm

http://www.apta.com/gap/letters/2010/Pages/100728_obama.aspx

http://www.marc.org/Environment/airQ/pdf/ozonereports/O3WeeklySummary.pdf

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Save The JO – Video #6 – The Solution – Interview with Steve Klika

Posted by Transit Action Network on July 27, 2012


Steve Klika, Chair of the Strategic Transit Action Recommendation Taskforce (START) spoke with Transit Action Network about the 2011 recommendations of this Taskforce. Steve has a long-term commitment to transit. He is the Johnson County representative on the KCATA Board of Commissioners and former Chair of the Johnson County Transportation Council.

Although the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners is currently struggling with its commitment to transit and the transit budget, this Taskforce provided recommendations to implement a phased-in comprehensive county-wide transit system based on the Johnson County Transit Strategic Plan. The Taskforce also provided a list of financing options. Johnson County residents developed this plan specifically for Johnson County.

The long-term transit solution for Johnson County already exists. We ask the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners to move forward with this transit plan rather than dismantling The JO over the next two years. Please begin by rejecting the proposed plan to eliminate or reduce 90% of the routes in 2013.  We believe Johnson County is moving in the wrong direction and deserves an excellent transit system on par with the rest of Johnson County services.

START_Final_Report_2011

START_Final_Discussion_2011

Strategic Plan Prelim 2011

JO Proposed Eliminations and Reductions for 2013 – Public Meeting Presentation

The deadline for public comment is July 30, 2012. Please speak up for transit.

Contact Johnson County Board of County Commissioners

  1.  Phone: 913-715-0430
  2.  Email contact form: http://bocc.jocogov.org/webform/contact-us

Contact Johnson County Transit

  1. E-mail: Comments@thejo.com
  2. Mail: Johnson County Transit, 1701 West 56 Highway, Olathe, Kansas 66061
  3. Phone: 913-715-8255 – record your message

See all of our articles and videos related to this issue. The articles started on June 8 with  Save The JO – Contact JOCO Commissioners and the videos are all on our TAN Videos page. Everything is also collected on our Facebook event page for Save The JO.

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Save The JO – Transit Advocates Speak Up At The JoCo Public Budget Hearing

Posted by Transit Action Network on July 26, 2012


The Johnson County Board of County Commissioners probably got a surprise at the Public Budget Hearing Monday night. Nine of the eleven people who testified at the hearing did so because of the transit budget and proposed plans to eliminate or reduce 90% of The JO routes in 2013.  Unfortunately for transit riders, participation was very difficult since the Johnson County Administration Building is hard to get to on transit and it is impossible to use transit to get home afterwards.

Jonothan Walker, President, ATU Local 1287

The Commissioners heard a wide range of perspectives and concerns but they all agreed on one point – find the money to keep The JO running.  Speakers were concerned about job losses, the environment, the elderly and disabled, social equity issues, the potential of losing the young professional class of workers, the County’s failure to honor its commitment to replace federal CMAQ funds and much more. Two of the testimonies are posted on our Save the Jo Facebook event page. The whole budget hearing is posted on the county website The individual testimonies start after the County Managers presentation at the 19 minute mark. The County Manager makes it very clear that Johnson County has the lowest mill levy in Kansas. Not having money for transit and other services in Johnson County is a self-imposed austerity. According to the County Manager, Johnson Countians pay an average of .58 percent of their household income on county taxes.

Martin Rivarola, City of Mission

The operating cost for the current 20 routes is $5.7 million* with only $2 million coming from the county and the County Commission is currently saying they can’t afford any more than that. Of course, not all of the Commissioners agree. The JO riders pay over $1.1 million of the service. Of course that number will go down if nine routes are eliminated. The rest, $2.6 million, is federal and state money. Much of this large subsidy is going to disappear over the next two years but currently the Commission doesn’t plan to replace it. Normally the bulk of transit operating expenses has to come from local sources.

Rev. Bobby Love, MORE2

A lot of the federal money is related to federal Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) funds used as seed money to start the CONNEX routes. The federal government doesn’t normally pay operating expenses. After three years the CMAQ money is finished and the money has to be replaced locally to keep the routes.

The Commission understands it commitment to replace the CMAQ funds for new routes with additional money. In previous administrations the Commission has been fiscally responsible and provided those new funds. This time the Commission is keeping the CONNEX routes and spending $10.7 million of additional federal money for major infrastructure improvements for this service through a TIGER grant, but they aren’t adding the new operating money. We don’t think that is a fiscally responsible decision. If the Commission wasn’t going to provide the operating cost for the CONNEX routes, they shouldn’t have started the routes and applied for the TIGER grant.  As a result, it appears that many routes must be eliminated or reduced to make up the difference. The CONNEX is potentially a great new service but the County needs to pay for it without dismantling The JO.

Joe Walker, Pastor Westwood Christian Church

Carol Guenther, JO bus rider

JO ridership is growing by 12%. While an increasing number of county residents are opting for public transportation, Johnson County Commissioners are dismantling what little transit is left. While the one-occupant car may be the current transportation mode of choice, you don’t need to look out very far to see fuel supply constraints, worse traffic congestion and more air pollution – none of which enhances the view of Johnson County as a quiet refuge for those seeking tree-lined streets, responsive government and effective planning.

For perspective on the county’s funding commitment to transit, the Kansas City, MO contract with KCATA this year is over $46 million. The residents of KCMO have a 7/8-cent sales tax to provide transit. JoCo residents pay extremely little in property tax to get the JO.

Johnson County prides itself on education, infrastructure and services but if you want transit you have to pay for it. Johnson County deserves a real transit system that stands a chance of winning people out of their cars. Tomorrow, we’ll post a video about a real solution for a comprehensive county-wide transit system. A plan already exists that was created just for Johnson County by Johnson County residents.

Jim Courtney, Executive Director, Mr. Goodscents Foundation

Janet Rogers, Transit Action Network

Sheila Styron, Public Policy Coordinator, The Whole Person

Ron McLinden, JO bus rider, Transit Action Network

The deadline for public comment is July 30, 2012. Please speak up for transit.

Contact Johnson County Board of County Commissioners

  1. 1.    Phone: 913-715-0430
  2. 2.    Email contact form: http://bocc.jocogov.org/webform/contact-us

Contact Johnson County Transit

  1. E-mail: Comments@thejo.com
  2. Mail: Johnson County Transit, 1701 West 56 Highway, Olathe, Kansas 66061
  3. Phone: 913-715-8255 – record your message

*Figures are based on the Johnson County Transportation Council meeting packet for April 2012.

Powerpoint presentation JO Proposed Eliminations and Reductions – Public Meeting 7-11-12

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Save The JO – Videos #4 and #5 Interviews with Johnson County Commissioners

Posted by Transit Action Network on July 22, 2012


Johnson County Commissioners Eilert and Peterson spoke with Transit Action Network about the eliminations and reductions proposed for January 2013 to The JO.

The commissioners have very different views on:

  • the role of transit in Johnson County
  • how to fund transit
  • how to respond to citizens’ vision for multi-modal transportation, sustainability and a better environment
  • the County’s commitment to the working poor who need The JO to get to work

Can Johnson County afford a small commuter transit system only if it is heavily subsidized by federal and state funds? We wouldn’t expect that to be the case from one of the richest counties in America*. It is the loss of federal and state funds, and the Commission’s current failure to replace those funds, that is causing the severe budget problems that will mainly hit in 2014.

One way to deal with the loss of the federal and state money is to eliminate and reduce most of the transit routes in Johnson County over a couple of years. The other way is to get the money and keep the transit.

Everyone from JCT staff to Commissioner Eilert said they are proposing cuts in 2013 so they don’t have such large cuts in 2014.  Unless Johnson County changes direction, they aren’t done shrinking the transit system. They say they trying to ease in the cuts to lessen the negativity that would result from doing it all at once in 2014.

Timeline for eliminations and reductions:
2012 Service reductions and modifications
2013 Proposed route eliminations (45% of all routes gone) and service reductions (45% of routes modified)
2014 Expect significant additional eliminations and/or reductions based on comments by staff and Commissioner Eilert

 

Please let the Board of County Commissioners know how important The JO is by attending the public hearing. Speakers will be allowed 3 minutes.

Johnson County Board of County Commissioners Public Budget Hearing
July 23rd @ 7 pm
Johnson County Administration Building, 111 S. Cherry, Olathe, KS 66061

If you miss the meeting:

Contact Johnson County Board of County Commissioners

  1. Phone: 913-715-0430
  2. Email contact form: http://bocc.jocogov.org/webform/contact-us

 Contact Johnson County Transit

  1. E-mail: Comments@thejo.com
  2. Mail: Johnson County Transit, 1701 West 56 Highway, Olathe, Kansas 66061
  3. Phone: 913-715-8255 – record your message
Deadline for public comment is July 30, 2012.
JO Public Meeting_Proposed Eliminations and Reductions for 2013
START_Final_Report_2011
START_Final_Discussion_2011
Strategic_Plan_Prelim_2011

We have numerous blog articles about this issue starting on June 8th with  Save The JO – Contact JOCO Commissioners

All of our videos are available on our TAN Videos page.

*Wealthiest Counties in The U.S. (Per Capita Income) based upon income tax returns from the Internal Revenue Service’s Individual Master File (IMF). Johnson County is listed as #42 http://www.amerifound.com/wealthiest_counties_in_america.html

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It’s Not Just About 669 – Save The JO!

Posted by Transit Action Network on July 21, 2012


We’ve blogged about Johnson County Transit’s plan to eliminate Route 669.  But there are other essential routes on the chopping block, too. Here are entries that we previously posted on Flickr about three of the other routes that we believe deserve special consideration.  Only lack of time has kept us from posting about some of the other routes as well.

JCT Route 546 – Johnson Drive / Quivira — Save This Bus!

The Route 546 bus pauses at the 6000 Lamar Transit Hub in Mission at 6:14 am to exchange passengers with other routes. This particular bus brought 4 passengers from points in Shawnee and Lenexa. Route 546 previously went all the way to Downtown Kansas City, but it was truncated at 6000 Lamar in January, 2012, to cut costs. Passengers who previously had a single-seat ride to their Downtown destination now have to transfer. As a result, ridership has suffered, and on many days one of these little 12-14 passenger buses is used. In addition, these small buses ride like trucks, and that doesn’t encourage ridership, either. Route 546 is proposed for elimination effective January, 2013.

JCT Route 667 – Nall — Save This Bus!

The first of two inbound morning trips of JCT Route 667 pauses at the 6000 Lamar Transit Hub in Mission at 6:49 am to exchange passengers with other JCT routes. This route is proposed for elimination effective January, 2013. This particular trip served about 13 passengers, 11 of whom boarded at 6000 Lamar or closer to its Downtown Kansas City final destination. Route 667 passes KU Med Center, where only one passenger got off. Low ridership has to be due, in part, to the fact that there is virtually no evidence of this route along the way: only six JO bus stop signs were spotted beyond this point for inbound (i.e., toward KU Med and Kansas City) riders, and none of those are within Wyandotte County where KU Med Center is located. First rule of public transit: Make the service visible.

JCT Route 672 – Midday — Save This Bus!

The Route 672 – Midday bus stops to board passengers at Crown Center at 1:07 pm daily. Originally known as Route M – Midday, this route has long been a mystery. After all, what does “Midday” tell you about where it might take you? Nothing, right? It’s a wonder anybody rides it at all, yet it currently averages about 20 riders per day.

The Midday bus makes one daily round trip from the Great Mall in Olathe to Downtown Kansas City and back. Along the way it serves the Johnson County Courthouse in Olathe, Harvest Community Church park-and-ride lot on Strang Line Road, Johnson County Community College, Oak Park Mall (and park-and-ride), Metcalf South Shopping Center (and park-and-ride), the 6000 Lamar Transit Hub in Mission, the retail complex in Roeland Park, Central Library and Sprint Arena in Downtown Kansas City, Crown Center (Lego Land, SeaLife, Kaleidoscope, shopping, etc), Union Station (Science City, special exhibits, etc).

Route 672 is the only transit link between Kansas City’s Downtown / Crown Center corridor and Johnson County between 9 am and 3 pm. It’s significance is that when used in combination with one of the morning or afternoon commuter routes, Route 672 makes possible many half-day trips in either direction — to OPM for shopping, to JCCC for a class or cultural event, to Crown Center / Union Station for kid-friendly attractions. It also gives commuters the option of using transit when they plan a half workday. Trouble is, Johnson County Transit has never promoted these uses, or even the fact that Route 672 can be used in combination with the commuter routes. We’ve done that more than once, most recently for half-day trips to Union Station for the dinosaur exhibit two years ago: Take The JO to the Jurassic

Route 672 is proposed for elimination in January, 2013. Because it’s not a commuter route, it doesn’t have a core group of “regulars” to come to its defense. Instead, it serves occasional transit riders who use it for a variety of purposes. Thus, it needs all of us transit proponents to come to its defense if it’s to survive.  (If you’re a regular on one of The JO’s commuter routes, 672 is your backup — even though you might not be aware of it.) Instead of elimination, Route 672 needs a second trip — for example, in from Great Mall, out only as far as OPM or JCCC, then back to Downtown and back out to the Great Mall. That would be less than double the miles, but more than double the value to its current and many potential users. Come on, Johnson County Transit, don’t eliminate Route 672 before you’ve even given it a proper chance to succeed.

Please let the Board of County Commissioners know how important The JO is by attending the public hearing. Speakers will be allowed 3 minutes.

Johnson County Board of County Commissioners Public Budget Hearing
July 23rd @ 7 pm
Johnson County Administration Building, 111 S. Cherry, Olathe, KS 66061

If you miss the meeting:

Contact Johnson County Board of County Commissioners

  1. Phone: 913-715-0430
  2. Email contact form: http://bocc.jocogov.org/webform/contact-us

 Contact Johnson County Transit

  1. E-mail: Comments@thejo.com
  2. Mail: Johnson County Transit, 1701 West 56 Highway, Olathe, Kansas 66061
  3. Phone: 913-715-8255 – record your message

Deadline for public comment is July 30, 2012.

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Save The JO – Video #3 Comments From the JCT Public Meeting

Posted by Transit Action Network on July 20, 2012


Johnson County Transit held a public meeting on July 11th* to discuss the proposed 2013 eliminations and reductions to 90% of The JO routes. Reductions were made to routes at the beginning of 2012 and, unless something changes in the budget forecasts, additional eliminations are expected in 2014.  Listen to the concerns and stories of some of the participants and responses from Johnson County Transit (JCT) staff. 

Transit in Johnson County is headed in the wrong direction.

Please attend:
Johnson County Board of County Commissioners Public Budget Hearing
July 23rd @ 7 pm
Johnson County Administration Building, 111 S. Cherry, Olathe, KS 66061

Show your support to improve and expand The JO and tell your story to the Commissioners. Ask the Commission to support transit,  honor their commitment to replace the federal CMAQ funds for both the Connex and the 75th Street-Quivira routes, and find the necessary dedicated funding for the long-term health of transit in Johnson County.

Contact Johnson County Board of County Commissioners

  1. Phone: 913-715-0430
  2. Email contact form: http://bocc.jocogov.org/webform/contact-us

 Contact Johnson County Transit

  1. E-mail: Comments@thejo.com
  2. Mail: Johnson County Transit, 1701 West 56 Highway, Olathe, Kansas 66061
  3. Phone: 913-715-8255 – record your message

Deadline for public comment is July 30, 2012.

Powerpoint presentation from the public meeting. JO_ Public_Meeting 7_2012

JCT Strategic Plan Strategic Plan 2010

START report START_Final_Report_2011

*Note: The date of the public meeting was July 11, not July 16 as shown in the video.

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