January 2011
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Member Highlight

Toledo Area Regional Transit Administration (TARTA)

Public transit is a critical part of a metropolitan transportation system. For people in our region who don’t drive, public transit is how to get to work, school, and everywhere else. For anyone concerned with reducing fossil fuel use, a well-integrated public transit system makes commuting more efficient and “greener.” All TARTA buses have bike racks - which can greatly extend commuting distance - and all use biofuel to save money and protect the environment. Bus schedules and much more information is at www.tarta.com.

In northwest Ohio, TARTA operates a system of fixed-route buses, Call-A-Ride van service, and TARPS paratransit serving the cities of Toledo, Sylvania, Perrysburg, Maumee, Rossford, and Waterville, and Spencer and Sylvania townships. TARTA also operates the Muddy Shuttle and Walleye Shuttle on game days. The fixed-route system has 34 routes with a central hub in downtown Toledo and 11 park-and-ride lots in suburbs and outlying neighborhoods. The Call-A-Ride service is a flexible program that picks up and delivers people who call for a ride. Call-A-Ride operates in Maumee, Perrysburg, Rossford, Spencer Township, Sylvania, Sylvania Township and Waterville. The charge for fixed route and Call-A-Ride is $1 – or 50¢ for seniors and people with disabilities.

Toledo Area Regional Paratransit (TARPS) is the system that serves people with disabilities. While all TARTA buses accommodate wheelchair users, TARPS is a service for people who have additional needs accessing transportation. The use of the TARPS system has increased enormously in the last several years. In 2009, TARPS completed 183,977 trips. The projected figure for 2010 is 225,000 trips. To accommodate this growth, a new 80,000-square-foot TARPS facility is under construction on the campus of the Martin Luther King Jr. Plaza. This new structure is close to the Amtrak station. Plans call for the new TARPS facility to eventually supply ethanol fuel to private vehicles.

Jim Gee, general manager of TARTA, is on the TMACOG Board of Trustees, and TARTA staff members participate in the Commuter Services Council and Transportation Council. Mr. Gee says, "TMACOG creates a forum to exchange ideas and presents opportunity for dialogue between its diverse membership of communities and agencies to the benefit of our region."

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